Today is our last day skiing and snowboarding for this year. I woke up around 6:00 am, put dishes in the dishwasher, made a sandwich, and brewed a cup of coffee. I left the condo around 8:00 am. I snowboarded down Long John, but my legs hadn’t recovered. I took 45 minutes to snowboard down the green trail.
I went back to the condo around 9:00 am. The kids were up and playing on their digital devices. We had brunch and said goodbye to my brother-in-law and nephew. Around 10:30 am, we headed back to the mountains. My kids and I went back to Long John. One of Vương’s ski popped off when we got on the lift. The lifty handed to another skier behind us. I told Vương to ski with one foot when we get off the lift. He lifted his ski-free leg really high as we skied off the lift together. He looked so cute.
After Long John, Vương wanted a eight-dollar waffle as usual. We bought two so the four brothers could share. After that my wife drove Vương back to the condo to relax. I skied on the black terrains with Đạo, Đán, and Xuân. They were a bit icy, but fun. We did three runs on the three black trails that were opened.
After that we skied back to the main base to load our gears, snacks, and drinks so my wife could take them to the condo. I switched to snowboard, we went back up the lift, and skied and snowboarded back to our rental condo. We were done around 2:00 pm. My legs were too tired and I ran out of energy after skiing and snowboarding for six days.
The trip was definitely worthwhile. My wife and my brother-in-law could get off the chair lift themselves and skied on the green slope. Vương had a fantastic time even though he only skied one long trail a day. Đạo, Đán, Xuân, and Hân spent quality time together on the slopes and digital devices. I picked up snowboarding skills—early edge changes and knee steerings—I needed.
In retrospect, I learned snowboarding the wrong way. I tried to advanced from green slopes all the way to surviving double-black-diamond slopes, and yet I didn’t get the basic riding down. I had to go back to learn those quick turns. Thanks to Long John, I was able to accomplish what I needed to learn. Since I could already handle blue and black terrains, I had more confidence in my riding.
As we close out the season, I still have more techniques to learn next year, but I have reached my goal for learning snowboarding this year. Even though I still love skiing, I am glad that took on the challenge to learn a new sport. Although skiing and snowboarding share the same slopes, they are completely different sports. Switching from one to another requires rewiring my brain, but that’s the beauty of each sport and I like them both.
Đán, our second son, learned skiing, but decided to switch to snowboarding and he is doing good; therefore, he doesn’t want to switch back to skiing. Xuân, our third son, wanted to learn snowboarding this year with me. We got him his gears. We even signed him up for a full-day lesson, but he couldn’t make the switch. He has advanced in skiing; he doesn’t have the patience to learn snowboarding from the beginning. I was also in his situation, but I had the patience and determination to take myself on a new challenge.
Before I learned snowboarding, I heard the rivalry from both sides. Older skiers dissed snowboarding and younger snowboarders dissed skiing. Having learned both sports, I still have my reservations. Ski boots are still a pain to wear and strapping up snowboard binding every time is also annoying, but I have embraced them both. I like switching between them and I will keep up with both sports for as long as I can. I met more skiers than snowboarder in their 70s. I wonder if I will be able to ski or snowboard when I reach 70.
This trip has been fantastic. Mad props to my wife for making it happened. She is always my rock. I love her so much for showering me with all these luxuries. I do not take these privileges for granted. These sports aren’t cheap to get into, but they are worthwhile if we devoted our time into them as a family. I hope my kids will appreciate them when they grow older later.