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Ski guiding in Meribel France with British ski instructors
Ski guiding in Meribel France with British ski instructors
Ski guiding in Meribel France with British ski instructors
Ski guiding in Meribel France with British ski instructors

MH2SKI Blog

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Hand Shoes

Posted on
December 26, 2010

Merry Christmas from Méribel, where we currently have brilliant snow conditions thanks to a weather front that lingered around from before Christmas Eve to Christmas Day night. It dropped plenty of fine, light powder so when the sun eventually shone today on Boxing Day it was a real treat. I hope you've all had a great Christmas, and I suspect for quite a few of you in the UK it's been a white one. This year my name wasn't on the list to take part in the torchlight descent on Christmas Eve, but I decided to watch with Canon instead.

I've had a busy week yet again. With this job I get to meet an amazing range of people. I helped a beginners group earlier in the week, which included a group of medics from Bournemouth. On their first day it was interesting to see how their frustration soon turned to relief and then complete joy within the space of a lesson. On Thursday I was drafted in to help a couple of Courchevel instructors who were looking after a 'large group of Muslims' (as they referred to themselves) from Surrey and London. They were fantastic fun to be with. Over lunch the conversation was enlightening, they spoke with passion about their families and described their religion and culture to me. I really enjoyed my time with them and hope to see some of them again in the future to have more fun.

Our friend Phil has been staying in Méribel this week. I've been able to free ski with him briefly on alpine skis. But mid-week he asked if he could have a lesson with me; he wanted to be introduced to Telemark skiing. It was interesting to see how his body language changed from being a relaxed and accomplished alpine skier, to being a complete beginner on the slopes this time on telemark skis. He continued telemarking after the lesson, and then promptly hired the telemark kit on Christmas Day as well. I think he's hooked.

Harriet and I went over to La Plagne on Christmas Day to visit her sister and family. My nephew Harvey has been having snowboarding lessons all week, and was very keen to show off his new skills to us. So after opening our presents, we booted up, and headed out into the snowy weather.

Without sounding like a proud Uncle, I have to say he looked excellent. For a nine year old he had great skills and was very responsible on snow by being aware what was going on around him. He had been learning the lift and piste names, plus he always looked out for other people nearby. Here's Harvey standing proud with his board with Harriet and her sister Sophy.

And finally this morning, Boxing Day, I had a lesson with some of my Dutch neighbours. I love spending time with Dutch people, they are friendly, their accent makes me smile and occasionally their choice of words are hilarious. It was the first sunny day in ages, with fantastic fresh snow, but very cold. So on the first lift up I was talking to Stefan about Christmas presents. He said he was given a new pair of 'hand shoes', as he admired his fancy-looking gloves. I was confused at first and then burst out with laughter. Apparently the direct translation from Dutch to English for gloves is 'hand shoes', brilliant.

Later in the session whilst we were skiing in the powder, one of them asked why their skis felt 'boobly'? I wasn't familiar with that description with skiing technique, but I think they meant wobbly. We had a great session skiing in the fresh snow, a couple of tumbles in the powder and a lost ski for about ten minutes, finishing off reviewing some videoing over a warming hot chocolate.I've another busy week coming up, with I'm sure just as many tales to tell next weekend. Have a great festive period.MartinP.S. I've just re-read this post and thought I could play the summary game, ie reduce it into 15 words. Merry medics beginners and Muslims shake hand shoes with Telemarker and marvel at Dutch booblies !?!

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With our skills- based system of learning, we give you the tools to safely negotiate any demands the mountains make on you, helping you to increase your comfort zone and ski in a wider range of conditions. Whether you are a nervous novice, a blue piste cruiser or an all mountain adventurer, we tailor your ski lessons to create a perfect fit. The question is, which one are you?

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