Danny returned from holiday two weeks ago and promptly disappeared offshore. We managed to catch up with him for the NZ vs England rugby the other night and talked him into coming snowboarding with us on Wednesday.
Yes, my pre-pre-midlife crisis persists; however, although we pledged to go snowboarding every fortnight, we haven’t been for a while what with all the guests. I was really looking forward to Ski Dubai on Wednesday, because Danny had never snowboarded before. Finally – someone who was worse than me!
On the chairlift, I thoughtfully tutored Danny on the finer points of snowboarding:- “Now, you should keep your knees bent – gives you more control – also there’s less distance to fall if you stack it in a yardsale. And you swivel your hips to turn, like this.” [Cue wild swinging of chairlift and glares from the Operator.] “Use the leading edge of the board to control your speed. Do you want to get off at the halfway point, Newbie? Surfie word. Newbie. Other expressions it is useful to know are ‘Dude’, ‘sweet’ and ‘Get out of my way, Dufus’.”
On his first run, Danny proceeded to dazzle everyone with 360° turns and pike flip jumps. Please forgive me if I sound like I’m whinging, but IT’S SO UNFAIR! He looked like he surfed out of his mother’s womb high-fiving the pediatrician. Apart from his second run, where he splatted into the fire escape door halfway up the slope and squeaked down it like a cartoon dog, he was better than most of the Ski Dubai instructors (although that’s not saying much).
Half an hour in, Danny careered down the expert slope, although it is still questionable as to whether it was intentional or he took a wrong turn. Once Danny went all ‘expert’, Husband had to do it too; and then they talked me into it.
“Come on Niamhie, it’s easy,” said Andrew, demonstrating a willful disregard for his wife’s wellbeing.
“Actually easier than the beginners’ slope,” said Danny.
“I was surprised how easy it was,” said Andrew. “Were you surprised at how easy it was, Dan? I was surprised at how easy it was.”
“Almost insulting,” agreed his partner in crime.
I thought I had more sense, but there is irrefutable evidence to the contrary. And so, I found myself launching off the top of the expert slope. To my surprise and despite myself, I was doing fine: crouched low cutting a swathe down the slope with natty little swivels.
Now, you may recall that the last time I wrote about my snowboarding career, I mentioned the kamikaze speed freaks that like to utilize my person as a landing pad. Well, I was about three quarters way down the slope and probably feeling a little too smug – you know? Because next thing, a blurred figure in black came streaking by precariously close. As he went, he put a hand in my face rugby tackle-style. So I was already halfway towards getting a zoomed-in view of a snowdrift, when another boarder crashed into me from behind and took my legs out.
I went soaring through the air and landed on my face. For a few long seconds, I thought my lungs had been knocked clean out of me; I couldn’t breathe. One of the Instructors called from the lift: “Are you ok? Ok?” but I didn’t have puff for any more than a weak thumbs-up.
I looked around to give a sizeable portion of my mind to the reckless halfwits . . . and it was my bloody husband and his best mate! Andrew had perpetrated the hand in the face with Danny finishing off the job.
“Baby,” crooned Andrew, inching back up the slope rather more slowly than he’d descended it. “Are you all right?”
“Get away from me, you Mentaller!” I snarled (once I had relocated my voice).
I’m actually astounded I haven’t more damage than a badly bruised calf and strained neck. The latter injury is now rather more pronounced since in a surfeit of drunken enthusiasm last Thursday, Andrew grabbed me by the ears and threw my head around in the manner of a major league basketball player.
At the moment I’m finding my husband very hazardous