In my house, January 1 marks not only the New Year, but the commencement of Birthday Month. My birthday month. I’m not one a woman who thinks birthdays are better ignored. Instead, I generally spend the entire month (the big day is on the 30th) planning my Birthday Ski Day. And, of course, Birthday Dinner at a Fabulous Restaurant.
This year, I’m planning—wait for it—Birthday Ski Weekend. That’s because the geniuses at the Deer Valley Ski School were kind enough to plan the first Women’s Weekend clinic for, yep, my 38th birthday celebration weekend. Turns out, it’s just all about me!
It’s also the closing weekend of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival, which is, hands down, the busiest 10-day stretch of my other life as an entertainment journalist. Work-wise, closing weekend holds the quietest couple of days of the ten, so I will cap off a week of seeing my colleagues from both coasts, screening the year’s coolest indie films, interviewing directors and actors, and visiting VIP lounges… with skiing, skiing and more skiing. I can’t think of a better setup.
I’m going to have lots to say about Women’s Ski Weekend over the next few weeks…but, all narcissism aside, I have compelling reasons to attend the clinic.
Here are a few:
- I have a seven year-old skier. He’s in his fifth season. He likes to go into the trees. I know there are more challenges ahead, and I want to be ready….because the leaps and bounds of improvement he made week-to-week in last year’s Sunday Ski Experience were just a taste of what’s to come this year. And I do not want to be the mom who cramps his style.
- My skiing ability has hit a bit of a plateau in the last few years. Part of that is my local’s attitude toward skiing—improvement is often a function of hours on the hill. Experience breeds confidence, and confidence breeds improvement. And I could use an infusion of both.
- I loved summer camp as a kid. Just ask my many friends whom I originally met at summer camp. Spouse included. Making new friends thrilled me then as it does now. So bonding with other women over a shared love of sport seems like the ultimate way to make the most of a learning experience.
- For once, I want to focus on my game, and only my game. Family ski days, as you know, are equal parts exhaustion, exasperation and exhilaration. And the days I head out with my kids do not find me focusing on my own form—or even tackling terrain that’s a notch outside my comfort zone. In a few years, that’s likely to be the case, since I’m planting the seeds for it now. But that doesn’t change the “now.” So carving out a couple of days to really push myself will be a nice break from the routine.
What? You say you worry you’re not good enough to take a Women’s Clinic? That, my friends, is patently untrue. The weekend is set up to cater to all abilities. All you have to bring is your desire to learn. That’s it.