Monday, December 8, 2008

A Series of Unfortunate Events

So this weekend. It was one calamity after another as a friend and I attempted a first snowboard trip to Blue Mountain...
Since our weather has been getting colder and snowier, and as I will be leaving soon for desert-like Australia, I had been thinking lately...why not take one last stab at a snowsport I love but only learned how to do last year? Having been a skier since I was 8, I tried to learn to snowboard in high school and then again in university but both attempts were met with utter and complete failure. It was only last year when my bf spent a very patient day teaching me that I picked it up. I was thrilled! I went twice last year and this was to be the first of what I hoped would be my get-in-bikini shape activity for the weekends up until my plane takes off in January. This fantasy was not to be realized, due to a very unfortunate bout of bad luck.

You know when things just start off badly and then go downhill? (haha, no pun intended.) Well we started the trip with a ginger ale spill in the car. Small, I know, but a harbinger of things to come. Next was the realization that my snowboard boots were at my friend's cottage. The hour long detour wasn't the end of the world but still, the second fly in the ointment. After a few stops along the way to make some last minute equipment purchases, and yet another beverage spill we were on the hill. The weather was great, cool but not too freezing, but the snow was rather sticky and I spent a very frustrating 20 mins essentially crawling across this through-way to get from one set of hills to another, easier set so that I could practice carving. As we prepared to go for our third run down the hill my friend realized that a strap of his binding had broken off.... geez I though to myself, what else could possibly go wrong? What happened next was worse than all the inconveniences thus far combined with my worse fears. I was carving nicely down the hill when I caught my front edge and took what didn't seem like a major spill. I wasn't scared as I dove towards the snow but my outstretched arm apparently was not up for the impact and as the familiar crunchity crunch sound echoed through my right shoulder joint, I knew what had happened. I had dislocated my shoulder. Not to worry I thought to myself as I laid on the hill, my arm splayed awkwardly out to the side and hoping that I didn't get plowed over by another novice boarder/ skier. At first I wasn't overly concerned since this a) wasn't the shoulder I'd had surgery on a year ago and b) every other time I'd dislocated my left shoulder (yes, there's been more than a few) I'd been able to pop it back in on my own. My lackadaisical attitude to my predicament gave way to moderate concern as my attempts to reduce the dislocation were ineffectual and ski-patrol was nowhere in sight. Finally after a good 15-20 minutes we were helped by the ski patrol but by then I was doing as much self-talk as possible to reduce the shock I could feel myself slipping into. What had initially been light pain was getting worse and worse as the muscles surrounding my joint went into spasm. Not even the stretcher ride of shame down the mountain or the jarring and painful ambulance ride moved my shoulder back into place. The nurses at Collingwood hospital were great and I was seen remarkably quickly by the doc who fixed me up with a pleasant combination of compassion and matter-of-factness. Even though everything happened quickly my shoulder had still been out for over an hour and a half by the time all was said and done and so I was pretty out of it. When I started to feel better (thanks to some prompt iv pain meds and Danny's arrival to the hospital to keep me company) I noticed that virtually all the patients in the crowded triage area were casualties of unfortunate skiing or snowboarding mishaps. I guess things could have been worse but it still was a huge disappointment to me. I hope that it heals quickly and that I can get another day in before I have to leave. Fingers crossed!

Our first and only on-hill pic. Kinda reflects my sentiments exactly... "aaaaahhhhhhhhh!!"


  1. After all that and you want to go back for another go? What is wrong with this picture? Just caught up with your blog posts - most enjoyable - lots of lol's!

  2. Thanks Lena! It's fun to write and I'm glad you enjoy reading it.