We were dressed, packed the car with everything but my laptop and what we were going to be wearing on the slopes later, and we headed down to the FoodMart, which opened at 8AM.
We got down there at about 10 'til 8, so we went into the little gas station next to it, and we each got a biscuit to microwave, which actually turned out to be pretty good. Rick got a Sausage and Egg, and I got a Sausage only.
We were in the grocery store at 8:01, and out of there by 8:19. Rick had brought a lot of stuff from home, so we just needed to pick up a few, very specific things. Our order totaled right around $35.
We stopped back by the hotel, we changed into our ski outfits, checked out and headed up to Snowshoe.
Evidently, there is no longer a "front desk check-in" at the bottom of the mountain, as it was 9:03 and the lights inside were all off, and there was no one to be found in the place. We saw a sign for "Top of the Mountain Check-In," and we followed it.
It's always cold as fuck at the top of Snowshoe Mountain and today was no exception. The outside temperature read 16° as we approached the top with the traditional wind-blowing fest not disappointing us—or rather disappointing me, at least.
To our delight, there was hardly a line, we checked in with Beth, who had to be the most efficient person there, and she said, "Well, you know check-in isn't until 5:00, and your room is dirty, but we'll go ahead and put a 'tracer' on it to let the cleaning staff know you're here."
We got our lift tickets, got our stuff out of the car, got into our skis and boots, and locked up our shoes, car keys and the room receipts in two rental lockers we got for the day.
It was a little bit of a chore putting on my boots, which hadn't been on my feet for two years—they day I bought them, since I didn't get to use them in Tahoe last year as when we unpacked there, we discovered that my boot back was still back in Raleigh.
My "new" skis worked well, but my boots hurt me all morning. They were too tight on the front of my legs; I guess it's the shin area. I'm not sure if it's that I haven't adjusted them properly, or the two pair of socks and the Long Johns all tucked up in 'em, or my big fat calves.
It snowed all morning, and the beginning was a little annoying. If you're a skier, you know the drill. First run with sunglasses only. Too cold on the face. Way too cold up there this morning.
Second run with a face mask on. Warm face, but continuously fogged up glasses due to the breathing through the ski mask, and for me, the right eye totally useless. That's not going to work.
I finally ended up taking off my glasses, which are my prescription glasses, and just dealt with the snow blowing in my eyes all the way down.
After just a couple of runs we ventured over to Cup Run and did the two black slopes over on that side. For the first time, I felt like I was "really skiing," those two slopes are like the blue ones out west—steep and expansive in places. My thighs were absolutely screaming at times.
We took a break down there, where we had a hot chocolate that surprised me in two ways: 1) it was only $1.59 (I was expecting at least $2.50, if not $3.00), and 2) it was pretty damn good.
Rick left before I did and took an extra run, which he used against me for the rest of the day. :-)
Right before I left there, this woman came from across the room with her green hood pulled over her head and her gloves on, and she said, "Would you do me a favor and button the two bottom buttons of my hood? I can't do anything with these gloves on."
"Thanks," she said giving me a big smile, and then walked over to her gentleman friend, who already had his gloves on, too, though I have to believe that they come off. Strange.
We headed back over to the other side, and worked our way back over to "Top of the World," doing Widowmaker two or three times, before breaking for lunch.
I had the "Hot Dawg Basket" and Rick had the "Chili Dawg Basket." I left Robert a "love note" (voice mail) from there, and checked in with Joe, whom I woke up with my call.
After lunch we skied all the way across the mountain to the PowderRidge Lift, which we took up, and then crossed the street to Cup Run again. We did two, I think it was, runs over there, the first during which Rick took his first and only fall of the day, after getting some "air" after going over a hump. No damage done. Well if you don't call a thumb that would eventually swell to twice its size damage.
By the time we finished those two runs, it was about 2:30, and we made our way back over to Top of the Mountain, where we ended our skiing day at about 3:30.
My legs were useless at this hour. It felt so incredible to get out of my boots.
We checked to see if our room was ready at 4:00, and it wasn't so we sat in the bar and had two cocktails. At 4:30, I checked again, and it still wasn't ready. So much for Beth's "tracer" to the housekeeping staff.
We had another round of cocktails, and by this time had starting getting pretty giddy. These two guys sat down on the stools next to us, whom Rick swears were family. We had some real laughs there.
At 4:45, our room still wasn't ready, so I went back and closed out our tab, which totaled an absolutely amazing $18.00, and shook our heads that that had to be wrong all the way back to the check-in area, where we got in line again.
We got back in the line, and by the time we made it back up to the front, we got Beth, and she said, "I think I checked you guys in this morning."
"You did," I said, "And you put that nice 'tracer' on for housekeeping to tell them we were that at 9:05."
And Rick said, "Would you let go of that 'tracer.'"
At three minutes until 5:00, our room was ready.
We got unloaded, and Rick got right to work on dinner. I made some cocktails, mixed up a batch of the Harry & David dip, and shredded some extra sharp cheddar cheese.
Rick had grilled (outdoors on his grill at home yesterday) chicken for this very occasion. He sautéed that along with some sliced green peppers and onions. We added that, with some shredded lettuce and salsa, onto big, soft wraps. Absolutely delicious.
I fired up my laptop, and to my absolute delight found out we had wireless service, though it's not advertised in this unit. Later I moved into the bedroom (as Rick decided he wanted the living room), and the access dropped in there.
So, I'm catching up my blog in "offline" mode, and I will post it tomorrow morning in the living room before we head out for the day.
Something tells me I'm going to sleep like a log tonight.