Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Lake Tahoe: Day 6

   We aimed to get in another pretty full day at Heavenly today, and we got it: we were on mountain from about 11-4:00, although I only lasted about 3 hours of that. My brain was strong, but my muscles were weak! My first few runs were fantastic, & I'm so glad I went out, but by 3:30 I was making mistakes and slipping up more frequently--due simply to fatigue this time rather than inexperience. That was frustrating, but I had skipped lunch, and this was day 5 of riding for at least 3 hours per day, so I shouldn't be surprised or frustrated! I just wanted to ride as long as possible now  that I was really getting the hang of it. Brett & Rafael were still zooming past me, but I was linking turns and making my way down much more quickly & confidently, if a little slower than everyone else.
   So I hung out and sipped water and ate the clementines and Clif Z-bars I'd stashed in my pockets, and waited for the boys to finish out the last runs of the day. It was nice to relax, taking in the clean air and watching others delight in flying down the slopes and deftly maneuvering back into line again. It was an awesome sight to see the skiers and riders cresting the hills, with the sun high above, illuminating the snow that clouded their feet as they sliced over and through it. Sheer poetry!
   Today was the opposite of yesterday: it was me who had the sleepy eyes and the dreamy look when we met in the lodge, not Brett. Brett even remarked on it, as amused as I was the night before. "I need food to perk me up," I said. So we returned, changed, & headed out to hunt & gather.
   Brett noticed a Hawaiian/Asian fusion place called Kalani right by the ice rink in the village. We still had 20 minutes of happy hour, so we sat at the bar with our gin & tonic, beers, & wine and knocked back a bunch of small plates: spicy edamame, sweet short ribs, a shredded pork quesadilla, spicy tuna rolls, and chicken wings. And the pieces de resistance: creme brulee cheesecake with fresh mango sauce, and fried banana springs rolls with vanilla bean ice cream and caramel sauce. A perfect way to savor our last evening.
   ...Not that we were done savoring. Another romp through freezing temperatures to reach the piping-hot, outdoor spa was in order. And it was the nightcap my aching body needed. By now only my neck tenderness lingered; from supporting the weight of the helmet, rather than from crashes. Improvement!!!
   Every night this week I've slept easily & soundly. It's nice to sleep until I wake up with the sunrise, rather than be jarred awake by an alarm. So what I love about ski trips is this balance of very strenuous (and very fun) physical activity during the day, & very restful sleep at night. Alright! ;)