Skiing through a Tunnel

At Snowbird, there’s a tunnel with a long, long Magic Carpet to get one from the top of the Peruvian lift to the Mineral Basin area.

No, I’m not joking. Here’s Ethel, riding along ahead of me.

This was at Snowbird, three weeks or so ago. The next weekend, we didn’t ski at all; the weekend after that, I skied four runs. Last weekend, we didn’t ski at all.

I got 22 days this year. That’s the worst season I’ve ever had – and most of those days weren’t full days, by any means.

Yesterday, I went for a run at lunchtime in Park City, in bike shorts and singlet – and it was so warm and sunny that that had to change. Before I was half a mile into the run, I had the singlet off, and had rolled up the bike shorts, so that it looked like I was running in a Speedo. You’ll be grateful to know that I didn’t take a selfie for FCD. “The vulgar stared, and the polite turned away”.

I should not be running nearly naked in Park City in mid-March. The snow is normally at its deepest right now.

This ski season is over, and it ended with a whimper – me, whimpering.

Meanwhile, we’re packing up the house. We don’t know where we’re going, but we’re going somewhere, it seems, unless the house doesn’t sell or we suddenly decide to stay where we are. That’s possible – heck, anything is possible, but that is certainly inside the realm of discussed outcomes.

But let’s be completely honest here – the thing that will drive us out of Park City is not the lack of snow, nor is it the relatively tame terrain available. The snow will return, and the older we get, the less tame said terrain will seem.

What’s driving us out of Park City isn’t the strangeness of the meetings – although I am getting very discouraged everywhere, to tell the truth. This may be part of being an old timer (I’m coming up on my thirtieth) but it seems to me more and more that folks simply don’t want to do the work, and will take any excuse or loophole offered, or even make some up. OA has, it seemed, come up with some sort of “Appreciating Diversity” silliness that seems to say “Hey, whatever anybody wants to call recovery is fine with us! We’re so scared of offending anybody that we’re certainly not going to ask anybody to do anything – and we’re certainly not going to beg of them to be fearless and thorough from the very start!”

..and AA is getting slipperier and vaguer, it seems, every year as well. The last issue of the Grapevine was basically all about agnostics and atheists, and the party line was pretty much “we don’t want to change our minds to get sober”. Heck, where I come from (that would be the Big Book) I’m not even supposed to talk to anyone about the Program until they can say that they are willing to go to any extreme to stop drinking for good. That would even include changing one’s mind…

But the meetings are going to be just as weird in the Salt Lake Valley, or in Bozeman – or in Bend or Steamboat, for that matter – although things do vary by region, and Utah has some of the lowest-energy meetings that I’ve ever seen. And truly I have found that many other places do, indeed, have less silliness than Utah, although I have to admit that the whole 12-Step culture seems to be sliding into the abyss.

But it won’t be meetings or church or snow or terrain driving us out of Park City – it will be Ethel, training for triathlon.

Now, when we moved back to Utah, I ran, and Ethel skied and played golf and maybe did some rock climbing. But after we moved in, I picked up the tri-thingy, but still Ethel kept her wits about her and everything worked out okay.

But after she started training, suddenly we didn’t have time or energy for anything; everything took longer, and cost more. That’s because Ethel is doing this right, and triathlon done right is time consuming and energy consuming and expensive. And I certainly don’t want her to stop – heck, she’s having a ball and doing great.

No, I love watching her do this, and I have every intention of supporting her, as she’s supported me through a lot of silliness. And if the ONLY thing going on were Ethel’s tri training, then the best thing for us to do would be to move to the Valley, whereas the other issues still have me hoping for Bozeman.

Now, while we’re being honest, let’s say it out loud – I could quit triathlon training, and go back to just running, and then Ethel could keep training, and we could sit still… be perfectly frank, that’s the first time that I’ve said that out loud.

And, suddenly, that seems like a good idea – perhaps a very good idea….


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