Monthly Archives: May 2005

Last day in Whistler :(

On my final day in Whistler we went boarding once again in glorious sunshine. I took my sapient baby out to ride again (which I wish I’d had chance to do more throughout the season cuz the board’s so much fun) and me & Si donned our hockey shirts for the final outing together. We met Pete outside the Roundhouse and headed up for a couple of warmup runs down the saddle before heading to the park. The second time down we had a race where Si bit off more than he could chew and ate shit whilst trying to overtake me :) tssk.
After that we decided to do an off piste run for some reason, because we knew it was going to be so slow and heavy, but actually it turned out to be quite fun because it was like the wettest heaviest powder you’ve ever ridden in, so it was like trying to tailpress your board and simultaneously make turns. Anyway a way down we found what looked to be a nice dropoff, but Pete’s scouting and subsequent directions were way too vague for our liking so I dropped off a small part to one side and directed Si down. The drop he came off must only have been about 6ft, but he did it absolutely perfectly before letting his nose dip ever so slightly whilst riding out and slammed hard on his face, bending the wrong way and cartwheeling in the process, which was quite amusing (but looked pretty nasty).
After a free lunch courtesy of the roundhouse contacts we hit the park all afternoon, where I attempted (and nailed) my first 360. Only 3 months overdue, looks like the 720 I was aiming for at the start of the season will have to wait :)
The park was pretty sketchy, the jumps had gotten really warm and the takeoff was all carved up on the jumps at the top. Plus the snow was so wet that you had to straightline it at all the kickers to get enough speed to clear the knuckle (which I failed to do every time after on the first jump I nearly did a backwards somersault unintentionally because there was a big kink in the takeoff). Still it was pretty fun because it didn’t hurt to fall in the slush. Some of the snow was pretty patchy in places though, there’s a cut -through in the trees where you can access another couple of hits before you get to the lift, but there was quite a lot of mud and branches to jump over on the way! On one run I was acting like a yuppy too – boarding whilst on the phone – and hit the top of a buried pole so went ass over tit right underneath the lift.
After boarding we had to head back to base to finish up packing and try and give the place a final tidy. The plan was that after we’d finished cleaning we’d go for a house dinner and then head out for a few farewell drinks for me as I was the only one from the house actually leaving Whistler the next day. That plan didn’t turn out that great though because the guys all decided to go and play football for 2 hours… which meant we didn’t get into the village until 10ish, so we had to sub dinner for a group subway (no pun intended). Actually when we finally got to longhorn the rest of the house (and Daz & Graham plus whoever else I’ve forgotten) went home early because they said they had to get up early the next day, lame. So that left Tim, Sara and I to see the night off. Tim, you’re hardcore mate, respect. We start and finish in the same way :)
I think by the time I got to bed it was 3am and I got up at 7, but the morning was just a complete disaster! Turned out that although we’d cleared everything out of the house the night before or whatever, by the time we’d emptied the bedrooms sooooo much more crap had turned up. Leaving lots of rubbish bags and no time to clear them due to being kicked out at 10am by our bastard landlord. In fact Dave saw him outside around 9.30 sweeping the drive and he asked, “So, is that nice, big taxi on its way yet?” I tried to avoid him altogether when I left to get the 10.30 greyhound to Vancouver but only managed a silent handshake. The guys just had to leave the house too, so we ended up leaving a load of crap still inside. Great.
I had so much stuff with me that I had to get the taxi driver to help me load and unload the car, and he had to literally drive into the bus stops and park up right next to the coach!! My backpack was so heavy that if I didn’t concentrate it would pull me over backwards, no joke. The three boards, three jackets, two sets of bindings, boots plus other clothes and tools in my board bag were pretty heavy too, but at least that has wheels! Luckily Yuki came to meet me at the bus station though cuz there was no way I could manage that lot on my own (I also had a box with speakers in and a bag of food and alcohol).
The bus ride down was a time for contemplation, like I said I was quite sad to leave Whistler but at the same time excited about going somewhere else, particularly returning to a normal society (well, that’s debatable here but that’s another story) where there’s lots going on. On the way I was listening to lots of tunes that had been on the stereo consistently throughout the season, which made me miss it already! I think one track which marked my mood is ‘Aqueous transmission’ by Incubus, listen to it as you read this if you may :)
After arriving in Vancouver I wanted to take a taxi to the woman’s house whose basement we were staying in but in the end we took public transport because it’s considerably cheaper! We called a cab once we were pretty close to the house to avoid taking another bus but after it didn’t turn up for 45 minutes we thought enough is enough, though true to form once we had gotten on the bus the taxi rolled up, but too late. So, next stop was the basement suite of a very nice Filipino lady named Cynthia, where we began the search for a house…

Last day at work :D (and some other stuff)

My last day at work was a liberating experience. Actually there were a LOT of people all finishing on that day – from the bussing staff myself, Kieran and Nathan; from the food servers Aly and Laura, plus a cashier called Tim and maybe another couple of people who escape me right now..
Anyway it was pretty much the same old same old, I took some pictures for posterity because I don’t think I’ll ever get to work in a place where the view out of the window is that good again! Also I kept my uniform and name badges as souvenirs…
Looking back on it I can’t say it’s been that bad because I’ve made lots of friends through work and it’s had a pretty active social scene, plus Nathan made the good point that it can’t have been that bad because the time has passed so fast.
That evening we went for a barbeque at Jonny et al’s house in Tamarisk. Tamarisk is maybe 15-20 minutes away from the village proper in the opposite direction to where we lived. These guys’ house was awesome – they were right on the edge of a big lake and had barbeques and picnic tables plus piers and kayaks provided exclusively for the entertainment of residents of that development of houses. And they paid considerably less than us, and had their own rooms… There was actually quite a funny and scary part of the evening where myself, Dave and Si left Matt and Lewis and went to pick up some beers from the liquor store in Creekside while they went straight to the house with the firelighters etc. As we were leaving the liquor store we met Tim & Jonny, both of whom were residents of the house we were going to, who had taken one of the kayaks and rowed across the lake to Creekside. Instead of taking the bus they urged us to come back in the boat with them, even though we queried if it would be ok with 5 people rather than 2.. Anyway they insisted it would be no problem, so we thought what the hell it’ll be a novel way of turning up to a party.
On arriving at the beach it turned out that their unsecured kayak had been ‘borrowed’ by one of a very drunk bunch of guys, who had gone out into the lake without a paddle (which they had removed in the hope that it would dissuade any possible getaway attempts). His friends all thought this was hilariously funny, but I thought it could have possibly turned ugly because Jonny was not a happy chappie. After berating the guy for a while he eventually managed to paddle the boat back to the shore, and all was well. When we actually saw the boat our fears grew in substance, but still we decided to carry on with the plan. We all piled into the boat, with $100 worth of alcohol, and pushed off. We’d maybe gotten 3-5 metres away from the shore when the boat started rocking violently and we started taking on water, prompting much shouting from the passengers. A woman on the pier adjacent to us suggested that maybe it would be a good idea if we all got lower down in the boat instead of sitting up on the bracing struts, so me, Si and Dave all got as low as we could without sitting in the water which was now occupying the bottom of the kayak. I was pretty worried at this point as we were facing a 15-20 minute row, and in my pockets were my phone and camera, plus if we turned over we thought all the beer would sink. What made it worse was the fact that there was such a big audience around the lake who I could sense were just willing us to fuck up :) what followed was an agonising wait (mentally and physically, because the cramped position we’d adopted began to get VERY uncomfortable after about 10 minutes, but we daren’t move for fear of losing balance) while our oarmen navigated us across. In fact we had to go with one oarman because both of them rowing at the same time made us too unstable, and the brim of the boat was at most 5 inches above the water level! Every time anyone moved everyone would shout “STOP MOVING!” lol. We all wanted to make two trips, stopping at one of the moors along the way, but the guys in the know thought that if we made an intermediate stop then maybe we would turn the boat over trying to get out, so we had to put up with the pain until we made it home. Miraculously we made it the rest of the way without taking on any more water, but my legs didn’t regain feeling for maybe 20 minutes after stopping, and my back was killing me!
The barbeque was awesome – we played some Frisbee and sat around on the beach until the sun went down. There were SO many mosquitoes though, I’ve never seen so many. Dave got bitten 17 times (we counted them), ha ha. I only got bitten two or three times, I killed one as it bit me, bastard thing.
Later, we went en masse to the Longhorn for celebrations, where I spent a while playing pool with Pete until contentiously losing by fouling on the black to a couple of Canadian guys (very unsportsmanlike). The whole centre section of the pub was occupied by roundhole staff I think, there were so many people from work there. At any rate, it was a pretty standard night out, Maybe getting wrecked the night before dampened the enthusiasm for drinking again, plus we could barely move having eaten so much for dinner!!
Sadly the mixture of all the beer from that night on top of the beer from the previous night left me feeling less than on top form the next day, and by the time I’d sorted myself out it was 2pm and I didn’t really feel like it was worth going up the hill then! So instead I spent the afternoon searching for houses and making appointments for Yuki down in Vancouver :) but I was pretty disappointed that on my penultimate day I didn’t make it out of the house… skillz.

The Thursday before

Actually I forgot to mention that on Thursday after not going boarding I got a call from Beth and we arranged to have a barbeque at our house. She’d bumped into some of the chefs from Sushi Village down at lost lake and they’d offered her the remainder of their salmon, which was a lot!! All the cuts that they can’t use for sushi, god knows how much they had when they started but we had a big bag of salmon parts for ourselves. The only problem was that we didn’t have a bbq, but, as they sell disposables in England we thought they would surely have some in one of the supermarkets… wrong. Instead the closest alternative was a ‘portable’ bbq, which we purchased along with some coals (and no firelighters because Beth said we didn’t need them). So later that evening, at around 8.45, three quarters of the way through that night’s episode of the OC, which my housemates insisted on watching, I took the bbq out of the box only to discover that it actually required assembling before you could use it. I mean, it required a screwdriver and everything, hardly the throwaway things you can buy in Tescos.. I think by the time I’d assembled it it was maybe 9.30, at which point Si and Beth tried to light the fire. Half an hour later there was still no fire, so a true man of the woods, Matt, stepped up and rebuilt the fire from scratch. I took care of the marinades (of course), and at maybe 10.30 or 10.45 we started eating dinner! The food was really really good (as was the beer), but made a lot of mess in our house – that’s hardly surprising though is it?
That night and the following one Dave and Lewis tried to topple my record time of 2 minutes 21 seconds for the metro city jam on SSX3, but to no avail!!! The record stands, muahaha.
Actually on the next night we had a meeting with our landlord as well to discuss our damage deposits. The guy is the most anal, tight fisted bastard I’ve ever met. In fact he enraged us when we went into his house (which was absolutely beautiful) because he said he was waiting for a big bag of money to fall on him so that he could renovate the place. We thought, “yeah our fucking damage deposits that you’re gonna screw us out of you absolute [expletive deleted :)].” Grrrrrrrrrrrr. I don’t think we’re going to get anything back out of it because maybe if he gave us some he couldn’t finance his 6 months a year’s worth of windsurfing trips. That would be a real shame wouldn’t it? Well, that reasoning coupled with the fact that we left the house in a bit of a state despite our best efforts to clean everything the night before our last day…


Turns out I didn’t get to post later, so I guess that means I broke my promise :s oh well I didn’t get any complaint mail so I guess my updating isn’t that important to anyone *sob* :)

After that early night.. well it’s all kind of blended into one.. Like I said the day after I had to get up at 6.30 to be at work for 8.15 (after my 45 minute commute to work it makes sense – I’m not a girl at getting ready promise). It was the first Saturday that only one mountain had been open and it was a gorgeous sunny day, which meant that for one we had loads of people because of the reduced terrain, and also that the people that were there hung around for ages on the patio drinking beer and sunning themselves, damn them. This ‘problem’ was compounded by the fact that ski patrol (the people who perform a mountain sweep to make sure everyone’s down ok, who usually come and kick everyone out just before the last lift download) didn’t show up that day so the patio didn’t get cleared until maybe 4.30 or 5, and most of the staff buggered off at 4.30, which left about 4 of us to close up the entire place. I think I actually got to the village at 5.55 that day, having been out of the house at 7.58 that morning, making for a ridiculously long working day by roundhouse standards.
After that chore I phoned my buddy Pete when we got to the bottom to see if he was still around drinking cuz I’d seen him finishing up around 4.30. I went to meet him and a few other people in Crystal Lounge – another girl who had been working at the hut at the top of harmony with Pete, Katie, a cock sure of himself but generally nice guy Liam (whose board I stole on my way out) and a lodge host (volunteer people who cruise round the roundhouse but really don’t contribute anything, for example the majority of their responsibility is asking people whether they’d like a tissue) called Matt. Pete let on that he’d picked up $100 worth of tips that day whilst being paid to stand out in the sun, so I thought it was only fair that he bought the first jug after the tribulations I’d been through. After a couple there we moved on to Cinnamon bear because one of the food servers, Ads, another Aussie who’s 6’5” and always wearing a huge grin, was leaving Whistler the next day. Turns out there were loads of people from work there so much more drinking and some nice games of pool. Somewhere along the way all the people from work disappeared and were replaced by Si, Lave, Mark and Lewis (Mark was on my course at uni and also in the ski club, as was Lave). When it got to around 10 we decided to move elsewhere, but I decided first that eating is cheating, but then realised I was definitely in need of some dinner having had my break that day at 10a.m. and then getting absolutely shitfaced. We passed by Zog’s where Beth was working, so I proceeded to ask very bluntly for a hotdog and fries, which I refused to pay for. Apparently she said to me, “Well I can give you some fries”, to which I replied, “and then get me a hotdog”, but I have to take Si’s word for it because he reminded me of it the next morning! Anyway she later told me she was worried about what a state I was in so decided to give me a hotdog as well. I then managed to totally miss my food with the ketchup pump, which she had to come out and clean up, and then after I’d finished attacked her with a squeezy bottle full of either oil or washing up liquid. Nice. (I did apologize profusely the next day, but I think she was cool with it all! Nice girl.)
For some stupid reason we wanted to carry on drinking so we went back to Crystal Lounge but by that point I was pretty much done for the evening. I saw Jess in there though who also seemed similarly drunk so I undid her halterneck top to see if it would fall off. It didn’t so then I tried to physically remove it but also no dice. Someone thrust a couple more beers into my hand which I dutifully saw off before stumbling to the bus stop having not contributed any money to the drinks tab. I saw Ali on the way to the bus stop coming down the steps but all I said to her was “have to get bus”. In fact I’m amazed I didn’t pass out on the bus and end up miles away from home but it was all good. Even more of a miracle was the fact that I got up the next day and felt fine, much to the surprise of my fellow drinking companions. Fortunately I’d managed to swap shifts with another guy Nathan else getting up at 6.30 again might have been a bit of a painful experience..

Anyway have to call it a night, will document more soon now that I’m settled in a new place ;o hehe. Keep the *ahem* emails coming, by the way Gurpal, Liverpool are so going down in the Eurocup :p peace. X