Not long after I married The Foreigner, we bought a car for his commute to work; the car he chose was a special K2 edition, and came with heated seats and a certificate for a pair of K2 skis. He already had skis, so the K2’s were for me, and when we went to get them, bought all the other gear I would need – boots, jacket, wool socks – because we were going to ski, and often. I was excited; skiing was something other people did, in groups, without me. I didn’t know how, but wanted to learn.
We drove to Vermont where I spent a morning taking lessons, and in the afternoon, we headed to a slope he claimed was easy, and I skied down with him.
Skied may not be the right word for it. We went down the hill and there were skis involved.
Although it was not the smoothest descent down a mountain, I actually had fun. The Foreigner helped me re-attach my skis, repeatedly, and when we were done and back at our lodge, praised my efforts to everyone who came into contact with us. Unfortunately, the next time we got a chance to go skiing – in the French Alps, on a trip with his family – I was pregnant with The Child, and falling down a mountain struck me as a singularly bad idea.
The Foreigner did not agree with this assessment, and his family – experienced skiers, all – didn’t see my point, either. But I spoke to my doctor before the trip and cited her opinion and that was the end of it, for both sides. But since his family was there to ski, they did. I spent much of the trip alone, repeatedly exploring the tiny alpine village where we stayed, buying things for the child I was expecting, and when the stores ran out of stuffed puppies and bibs, I bought treats for the resident dog at the inn, much to the amusement of the innkeepers.
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