Day 219: It’s my birthday and I’ll ski if I want to

21 February 2011

Location :Santa Fe, New Mexico

High Point: 12,000 ft up a snowy mountain admiring the view of the desert all around, not your typical view from the slopes, awesome!

Low Point: Steve’s pushing resulting in a 4 person pile up at the top of the ski lift, thanks Steve 😉

No point:  Gemma and I not realizing that it is impossible for anyone to have an alcoholic drink in New Mexico unless they are carrying ID.  We toasted Amy’s birthday with water!


Close to tears point:  On average once a day someone does or says something so nice/generous/touching that I am choking back the tears.  Today for me it was when we were told by the waitress that our dinner had been paid for by a lovely lady who had stopped by our table on her way out of the restaurant to ask us about Follow That Fire Engine, thank you Barbara!

After a very comfortable nights sleep and a tasty brekkie at The Inn at Santa Fe (thank you so much to all there especially to Victoria & Oscar) we headed off up the mountain to the Santa Fe Ski area.  As it is Amy’s birthday and she has been on the road for almost 4 months we thought she deserved a day off and some Birthday fun.

We were soon kitted out and ready to hit the slopes.  It was –11 so we were very glad of our FTFE branded Columbia jackets which kept us warm and of course helped spread the FTFE word.

The lifts at Santa Fe ski are not for the faint hearted, you need to be on your guard.  They don’t slow down to pick you up, most don’t have a bar to rest your board/skis on and as for the getting off part, well it takes a few go’s to get used to, it’s pretty swift and steep!  Steve was the first to experience this with Amy & I following behind, he was so sure we would stack it he was lying in wait with the video camera at the ready to catch our embarrassing moment.  However the other thing about where you get off Santa Fe ski lifts is that as well as being very short and steep they are sometimes quite subtle, you look at them and think there’s no way you’re supposed to be able to actually get off here surely… So as Amy and I approached our first possible dismount point we were having a great chat and by the time we saw Steve the 2 second opportunity to get off had passed so we continued on up to the top.  So much for an easy warm up first run!  Other comedy moments on the slope included James loosing a ski and having to brave the already tricky dismount with only one ski!  Later on in the day he also had a very close encounter with a tree.

Having only been in America for a few days I’m still amazed by how friendly everyone is and those at Santa Fe ski were no different, interested to find out more about FTFE and eagerly passing on tips for the evening part of Amy’s birthday celebrations.  In order to make sure Amy had a special day we sang Happy Birthday to her almost hourly, whether that could be considered a treat or not is a matter of opinion, but sometimes the locals joined in too which was lovely.  However our day off for fun and celebrations took a worrying twist when we took Martha back down the mountain, there was a shudder and a bang and she was spluttering out first lots of white smoke and then black… and she seemed to have lost her power.  Oh dear, worrying times on-board.   Out came the manual and Steve got to work trying to assess what could be the matter.  Soon Keith Bute was also giving advise from across the pond.  One thing was clear, whatever was the matter we weren’t going to get it sorted half way up a mountain so we made our way slowly back down to my new favourite town, Santa Fe.

After a spot of birthday après ski, champers and birthday cake in the form of pumpkin pie, and a quick change we headed out for dinner and to explore the town a little.  I love Santa Fe, the strict planning and build regulations have done their job in maintaining the traditional style of the buildings that give this state capital it’s very special authentic Mexican feel.  As always with FTFE our time was limited but a quick walk in the plaza area after dinner admiring the buildings and soaking up the artistic vibe was enough to make us wish we could find more time to explore in daylight.  As the weary crew headed back to the hotel we were reminded of the uncertainty of tomorrow, the only thing we know for sure is first stop is a garage for poorly Martha…


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One Response to “Day 219: It’s my birthday and I’ll ski if I want to”

  1. Wow – looks amazing x