Shoop, Shoop, Shoop!

We made it to Braemar on Saturday, fighting severely flooded roads, only to find out that the road leading to the Glenshee Ski Centre was closed! The rain turned into sleet up on the mountain so flooding and blizzard-like conditions were keeping all the potential skiers at bay. We waited in the line of cars for about 40 min. and contemplated driving to a different ski centre,but eventually decided to hedge our bets and book a room at the local Fife Arms Hotel in hopes of better weather. It was £80 for our room, dinner and breakfast. What a good time that turned into! We checked out our room first, which had a charming view of the snow-capped moutains and quaint town homes. Since we hadn't brought many necessities or even a change of clothes, we bought a toothbrush and toothpaste at the nearby pharmacy and then settled in at the hotel bar for a nice refreshing beer. And yes, they had Coors Light... score!

I think it was only about 10 min. before we'd struck up a conversation with some folks at the table behind us and they invited us to join them. They'd also come down from Aberdeen to ski and ended up in the same situation as us: a last minute hotel room with no extra clothes and fingers crossed for ski-able weather on Sunday. In fact, the tiny town seemed to have an overnight population boom since most visitors had gone through so much effort to get there that they didn't want to give up just yet. (It's a good thing we didn't, Sunday turned out to be perfect with blue skies and sunshine and very little wind.) We spent the entire afternoon and early evening on Saturday with our new friends, ahem, at the bar, barely making it to dinner at the restaurant... which was like a million 20 feet away. We ended the night drinking Champagne in one of their hotel rooms before Mike and I had to finally turn in for the night.

I can't believe we made it out of the hotel by sunrise!

Miracle of miracles, we were all up and eating breakfast by 8am this morning and then headed to the ski centre. It was a beautiful drive through the mountains and Mike and I saw a herd of deer and stags with huuuuge racks on their head, so Scotland-typical! The ski conditions were as good as we could expect, a little icy at times but otherwise okay. We rented our gear with no problems and were on the slopes by about 11. It took a good novice run to get my ski legs back under me (like riding a bike, yeah?), but I was actually most worried about the dang lifts they used. They only had one chair lift (for two people, forget those six-person haulers they use in Colorado), and the rest of the "lifts" were small round pulleys you put between your legs. Then the pulley would take off and jerk you forward and you just had to hang on and hope for the best. It was absolutely exhausting riding those things, more so than skiing the damn mountain! They were hardest for the snowboarders since they were getting pulled up the mountain sideways and the pulley shook and jerked all the way. We saw more people wipe out because of the lifts than while actually skiing.

Our scenic drive to the ski centre.

We did all kinds of runs (green, blue and red), except black. The ice and uneven terrain was a little more hazardous once the fog rolled in, which made it a little hard to see. But Mike and I both did pretty well, he fell twice and I only fell once! And I'll be honest, I was skiing down a black like a pro standing completely still waiting in line for a lift. I just kinda lurched forward and caught enough momentum to smash into the super tall French guy in front of me. Pretty sure my head came up to his knee cap, but no damage done once I re-inflated my pride.

We had amazing views across the mountains, and with very little shrubbery and trees which felt odd.

On the way home we saw a gorgeous male grouse and tried to snap a few pictures but they kept coming out blurry. I only wish you could see its amazing color.

Back on the road, all the flooding had ebbed away and it was an easy drive home. We cranked up my iPod and listened to our favorite Texas Country songs while discussing where we want to eat dinner first when we arrive in Texas... either On The Border or Texas Roadhouse! It turned out to be a superb weekend and a great way to celebrate my incredible husband's birthday (Jan. 18)!!! Happy birthday, Mike, I love you!!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Looking forward to the new look you are working on in the blog! As always...enjoy reading every word!


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