Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Red Indian

How did I get sunburnt during the coldest Austrian winter in 20 years?

A Beetroot

I went skiing on Sunday to Hinterstoder, and being preoccupied with the prospect of broken limbs I didn't take suncream. Wow. REALLY regretting that. The worst thing isn't the pain I get from so much as smiling or frowning, or even the loss of feeling in my top lip; it's the ribbing I've had at work! People have been coming from different offices just to see me, The Giant Tomato (tm), and chuckle at my misfortune. Gerhard has taken to calling me "The Red Indian", and now greets me with "How" whenever I see him. Hilarious. Whereas the Damen have been offering sympathy (with a few sniggers), the Herren have been taking every opportunity to rub it in.

Andreas to Gerhard, within earshot at lunch: "Are you going skiing this weekend?"
Gerhard to Andreas: "No, I think it's too hot at the moment!" (wink to Jon)

Me (talking about ATP with another colleague): "I'm going to a music festival next to a beach this summer"
Colleague: "Are you going to survive??"

That's quite enough of that, thank you.

The skiing itself was painful, yet strangely rewarding. After a day of falling on your backside, frontside, and sideside, getting even one turn right feels like a huge achievement. Having never been skiing before, I was expecting Mario et al to teach me a bit more about the basics before they took me to the top of the highest slope and told me to ski down.

"Don't look down". Of course I'm going to look down now, aren't I??

Having said that, the only way to learn is to try doing it yourself. Skiing is one of those impossible things to teach, it's all about balance and how you react to the conditions and your own physique. This does mean that you do fall over A LOT when you start to learn. Thankfully, Mario has seemingly unlimited patience and spent most of the day picking up my ski poles while I floundered in a snow drift 10 metres off the piste, watching 7 year old children ski in circles around me.

I didn't take any photos while I was up there because I was busy either skiing far too quickly or lying face-down in the snow, but the scenery was amazing. I haven't been up a mountain since Mont Blanc when I was 10, so the views were a nice distraction from the pain when I was lying in the snow, cursing.

I can't wait to try it again!

Signing off, Jon Van Tomato


At 11:25 am GMT, Anonymous 10 Ninjas said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 11:26 am GMT, Anonymous 10 Ninjas said...


At 7:07 am GMT, Blogger thisguysplace said...

amazing. can't wait to see wat colour you'll be under Malaysian sun!

i like the eye-mask ala Robin the boy wonder.

At 6:43 pm GMT, Blogger carpet ministry said...

aww bless your little cotton sunburned red socks you

At 8:27 pm GMT, Blogger Jon said...

Thanks for all your sympathetic comments!

steve: That's some pretty bad sunburn - do you know him? What's your worst sunburn story? :-P

jason: *Pow!* Take that. The phrase "burnt to a crisp" springs to mind...

g: for once, I actually miss english weather...

At 9:53 pm GMT, Anonymous Jay said...

I recently made acquaintance with a guy who used to ski professionally! He is also one of the nicest people I've met (seriously, Im not talking my usual asshole guys standards here - Im talking an actual decent human being, NICE - oh my god, I think I like him...argh, this is soooo NOT the time to realize this!!!!! Anywayz yeah, he's nice. that's what i wanted to say) I've bugged him to teach me to ski and he said the same thing about just being fearless and learning for yourself. So Well done JVT and I'm well looking forward to seeing your tan in person!!

At 5:24 am GMT, Blogger Cora said...

:) I've always thought that you use very well your sense of humor :D

Be sure not to dissapoint us and post also the sequel with your skin starting to peel off:)

Something would be definitely changed at you for Easter :)))


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