Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Icicles and I-Pads

It’s interesting from a sociological perspective being in a ski resort.  I’m here because of a love of spending time in a snowy mountain  haven  zooming down  wide easy runs.   It's bliss apart from a bit of pain in the tootsies!  Happily, there’s a lot of others with the same mindset.  For the first time in yonks I’m having lessons to rebuild my confidence after last year's spectacular wipeout.  Luckily, I’ve met up with a bunch of  individuals where there’s lots of common ground and I’m having a right old laugh. Good craic as our Irish chums might say.

Skiing has long been seen as a pursuit of the wealthy and there’s more than a few here who aren’t short of a bob or two.   Our ski instructor told us about the Russian family who spent 20,000 Euros each on a shopping spree last week.   No wonder there's salopettes on sale with a cool 400 Euro price tag if people are so ready to stump up their dosh!  Those designer shops wouldn't last a fortnight if everyone were like me.  I’m wearing a North Face jacket  bought in a summer sale way over a decade ago.  Fingers crossed and it could last quite a few more years yet.  It might even fit a bit more comfortably on my next trip if I lose some weight!  Lou’s forty Euro jobbie, that was purchased in Decathlon for our  2011 Yellowstone trip, reaching his knees when we bought it, is in its third season.  However, one of his new mates badgered his father for a perfectly fitting designer jacket even though his brother’s cast off would have done the trick.  It looks like he’ll need new set of outerwear next year as he'll have grown out of it by then. Lou is mixing with a privileged set  in the kid’s club at the hotel and within his ski school class and it’s starting to show in a flurry of uncharacteristic materialism.

‘Mum, I really do need an i-Pad,’ he said in matter of fact tones yesterday in the dinner queue.  A couple nearby, whom I suspect share my own set of priorities and forego material things for the opportunity to travel, snorted loudly and gave me a sympathetic glance.  ‘Well you can have one if we don’t go skiing next year.  I can’t afford everything’ was my retort.  A light  bulb moment followed after which Lou reached,  what was in my eyes, the right decision.  Teenage years are approaching and fads and fashions are becoming more of a priority.  I suspect that this conversation may not be the last of its kind. 

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