Skiing is a sport that I grew to really love. It seems to have been one of those things that is difficult to do well but when I got past the stage of continuously falling I had a bug to get better at it. It was difficult to improve but every time I did the rewards for me were huge. The feeling of speed and control is immense.


My brother Graeme took me for my first go at it to Glencoe when I was 19 or 20. It is a rugged unpisted minimal of poorly arranged equipment sort of place. I got soaked to the skin because I never had proper ski clothes - jeans, motorcycle over-trousers, an old anorak. I can remember sliding from one side of the gully to the other, and when I had to turn I would fall down, point my skis in the new direction and go again. I did try and turn before falling and I was really trying and concentrating. A TV personality yelled at me "get your tongue in and relax". (I never did find out who the personality was, just someone who was on the TV at that time as an outside reporter.)


I went on to have holidays abroad, and that experience is totally different from skiing in Scotland. Good piste equipment, lazy lunches in mountain restaurants, sun, glühwein, après-ski, parties; it got to be that we would have one week a year abroad most years.


With a week's ski holiday per year though you can't improve, all that seems to happen is that bad habits get reinforced. So I went to the dry ski slope at Glasgow ski club and took lessons. After a lot of lessons I improved and went on to gain a qualification of ASSI (Artificial Ski Slope Instructor). I took a few classes and forcing myself to do that was a good confidence booster but the types of mixed classes I was given with people at different levels got me exasperated and I gave it up. Gaining an ASSI had really improved my skill skiing ability though and skiing abroad was even more rewarding where I could take on really challenging slopes. I have one video of myself skiing taken by Mark, a friend I made through skiing.


Another video: Loafing at lunch in Löfer - a place on the mountain called Almtreff with Mark and Ester.



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