She had only skied a few times before: she did not like the feeling of being new at something challenging or of being out of control. Not at work. Not at play.

She spent a few minutes wondering about herself and whether “vacation” meant to let fear clutch at her heart and catch in her throat and to wobble and tumble all over creation. She questioned the wisdom of learning something new at her age. Then she decided she could do this, really she could. She just needed to use a trick from her real life : she talked herself through the scary parts and she went slowly. There was no rush and she remembered that she could use the skis and the hills to control her speed. She stopped thinking about everything except the movement of her body and the sun on the glittering snow.

She was particularly pleased when Billy Kidd watched her happy little turns and joked that she was a future Olympic skier.

And yes: if falling and getting up again and again in dogged determination ever became a competition, she’d surely be a gold medalist. An older one at that.


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