Saturday, March 31, 2007

Of Greetings and Goodbyes

Yes, I stole the title from an AFI song...
11pm... Last night here at Mt Snow.
Had people over last night for a bbq and some drinks, said goodbyes... Was a bit tough.
Finished packing today, went for dinner up at the restaurant at the mountain with the guys from my house, then had a couple of the guys from next door pop round to say goodbye as well.
So I think I'm nearly done with saying my goodbyes... Definitely made some good friends that I'll be catching up with in England and during travels.
Onto greetings and on Sunday I get greeted at the airport by the gorgeous Charlotte. I'm so rapt and can't wait to see her. I may even have trouble sleeping over the next 2 nights as I'm so excited!
Well I guess this brings me to the end of the American chapter of my travels.
Next Chapter: England and the joyful process of finding somewhere to live and work.

Will update in a few days with pictures of double decker buses, phone boxes, big clocks and other assorted cheese...

Alright, I'm going to triple-check my stuff to make sure I haven't forgotten to pack anything, then off to bed to will the next two days to hurry up and pass.


Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Mythical Spider-Fence

Before I forget...
Was out the other night having a few drinks for my going away and somehow the topic of camping came up. One of the English girls asked "How the hell can you go camping when there's so many spiders and bugs around?"
"We put up a spider-fence." I replied
"A spider fence?" She responded, somewhat puzzled.
"Yeah, it's a mesh fence about 20cm tall and you surround your camp site with it and that way the spiders can't climb in over the fence."
"Oh, cool." She said.
Then Nikki, one of the Aussies piped up "Wow, we never had spider-fences when we went camping." Unfortunately for her, she'd bought the spider-fence story as well...
"Yeah, you only really need them if you're in proper bush..."
"Oh ok."
And with that, a myth was born.
Now go tell everyone you know and see how many gullible foreigners we can have believing that we use tiny mesh fences to keep spiders out of our tents. Does someone have wikipedia submission rights? Put up a plausible spider-fence article for me.


As promised in last post, pictures from the last few weeks:

Here, this is what we call 'getting a lift to work'.

Before colour telephones everyone talked in black and white.

I think this sign means "Use a pregnancy test to unlock your potential children."

The boys on the Killington trip. I need a hair-cut.

The rental car... I think this was moments before we realised the stupid thing was out of fuel and then participated in around an hour-long session of 'The Waiting game', which mainly involved sitting and waiting.

During one of our many archaeological digs, we found this well preserved specimen. This discovery has aided our understanding of how the 'Lifties' of the past may have existed in such harsh conditions.

Organising shite...

On the left: Broken board
On the right: New, new unbroken board.
You can see the light reflecting off the crack on the old board going across the top from left to right up to the logo...

Anyways, it's late and I'm tired. Spent the entire day not being at work. Instead stayed home and finalised and reconfirmed my flight and worked on accommodation and job-type stuff...

4 days till England and Charlotte! w00t!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Visas, snow, rain, boards, repeat.

Things that have happened since last post...

1) I got my visa application that I sent back to Australia rejected.

I then had a massive freak out about it... Panicked alot... Maybe got a little wall-punchy. Then did some more looking into things and found out I could apply here in the US. So went through the whole application bullshit again, express posting my passport and documents all around the place.. Finally got my passport back today with a nice shiny UK Visa in it! W00t!! Finally.... So now I get to England and see Charlotte on April 1st as scheduled. Charlotte's been in London a couple of days now and I think has fallen in love with the place. Can't wait to see her... Only nine more sleeps! Am currently going through all my flight info, baggage limits etc and making sure that's all in order before I fly out. Can't wait to start travelling properly and see new stuff.

2) Went on a little 2 day boarding trip to Killington with some of the Aussie boys and a couple of the poms that are here.

Was awesome fun... Such a different type of mountain to Mount Snow; way bigger, way better organised and just more of a feeling that you were in a proper ski resort. Killington is to Mount Snow as a Rolls Royce is to a Datsun.
Had a couple of dramas which may or may not have resulted in a speeding fine and a broken down (read: ran out of fuel) hire van. Was well worth the troubles though as we got some good boarding in. Although I did snap my new snowboard... Which leads to point 3

3) So I snapped my new board.

From this I have come up with two possible causes:
Cause 1- I'm way too awesomely hardcore for any piece of fibreglass/wood/composite and even my presence may cause such devices to explode, seemingly without cause.
Cause 2- I just had some bad luck with boards and hopefully I'm now done with these board-breaking shenanigans.
Cause 1 wins hands down... pfft
I took the board back to the shop today and showed them the damage. Jesse, who runs the shop had a look at it and said "Yeah, they'll warranty that, but you can't not have a board for the rest of the season." So rather than make me wait around for all the warranty paperwork nonsense, he just gave me a new board. It's identical to the snapped one, just not snapped. Obviously. So now I have a nice new board again.

4) Snow/Rain/Snow/Rain etc

It's rained, it's snowed... We've had over a foot of powder, then we've been down to rocks and ice, then a heap more rain, then some more snow. Now the weather's getting really spring-y and the snow's melting so I'd expect there'll be very little left after this weekend. I'm fine with this though as I'll be leaving in just over a week.

5) The 2006/2007 IBNITI

This was the International Biggest Name In Tweed Invitational...
A huge competition which was comprised of 13 events including ski/snowboard racing, lifeguard sprints, a 500m run, pool, darts, pinball, air hockey, a 'wing off', nearest the pin, a drinking competition and some other things I can't remember right now.
This was conducted over a couple of days. I won nearest the pin (Thanks to Morgs for all the golfing practice). I also won pinball.
I think I might be a nerd. (Seriously though, MULTIBALL!!!)
I finished fourth overall (I missed an event. This being the obvious and sole reason I was not the champion. hehe)
Pip won it overall and other (dis)honourable mentions include:
- Tomas, a Slovakian native who ate 49 Chicken wings (I ate 31 and I'm never eating chicken wings again.) in the wing-off and also won the drinking competition. He either can eat alot, or really hates chooks.
- B. Short for Boronislav i think, or something similar, who won the snowboard/ski race... And then told us he was a member of the Czech Republic Alpine Ski Team. Talk about taking candy from babies.
- Jon, the American BMW rep who won the 500m run despite falling face first in the ice-mud-bitumen.
- Can't think of much else.. but was a good way to fill in some time.
I may also have vomited a little after the drinking comp. Ewww..

So from here, the plans are, head to Boston on the 31st of this month, then fly out the following morning. Get to London that evening, meet Charlotte (Awesome!) and then see where we're up to with flat finding etc. Then have to organise a job interview, a NI number, a bank account, a phone/sim card and possibly find a quaint English pub for a few warm pints or something similarly cliched. How the hell do you do the e's with the little accent thingy, like for cafe, cliche... Bah, I dunno...anyways...
Really looking forward to seeing England. Also been looking through the ol' Lonely Planet guide and checking out places to go in Europe... So much on the list so far. Hopefully will get to see most of them.

Also, to keep your appetite for random things satiated feel free to peruse the following:

If this guy is not simultaneously the most ridiculous and most awesome human to ever walk the earth, then I don't know who is. Seriously... Who the hell gets to dress up that much? Actors you say? Yes. Blues-harpists? No! Hell no!
He looks like a pirate barbarian bodybuilder archer bandit that fell into the extras wardrobe for Beyond Thunderdome
Seriously, go to his page, click on the slide show or image gallery or whatever it's called and check this guy out.
He wins my Most Consistently Absurd Facial Hair Award.
And gets inducted into my hall of fame, for what seems to be decades of dedication to retarded moustaches.

Anyways, I've got some more photos and stuff to upload soon, so drop by again in a little bit.

Also, Sammy left Mount Snow a little while back and it hasn't been the same without him. Sammy has the best collection of caps in the world and is one cool dude. Happy now Sammy? :)

Sunday, March 4, 2007


Just so you all know, I stayed home tonight and updated my blog and missed possibly the biggest event of the season at the Snow Barn nightclub:

Changes in Latitudes: The Nation's Best Jimmy Buffet Cover Band...

For those who are interested, you can find out more about the seminal works of Jimmy Buffet here

I hope you all enjoy my updates, seeing as you've deprived me of so much joy...


Some snow-related antics...

Had an awesome day out snowboarding on Thursday.
Started to ride in the park with some of the instructors who were off duty, so learnt a heap as well.
Learnt or learned?? I dunno... Anyways...
Was riding With Pip, Jello and Martin... Learnt to hit some of the big kickers, so was getting some pretty big air which was scary, but awesome fun once I got it (semi) under control.
Also started to hit some bigger boxes so hopefully can work my way up to some decent rail tricks before the season's out.
I took my camera out for one run and got some shots of the guys trying some stuff.
They introduced me to 'The Wally' which basically involves one person lying down and making a ramp with their board, then having someone else use them as a jump, photos of which are below:
Martin about to jump off Jello

Pip jumping off Jello.

Also got heaps more snow today. It was absolutely bucketing down. I was (luckily) stationed inside a lift shack for the day, so found it amusing watching the guests looking cold all covered in snow, just like this guy:

People hate it when you go overboard with the talcum powder...

In other news, we got bored the other day, so dug a hole (insert The Castle jokes here) in the snow near our lift to kill some time... It was about the size of a bathtub and completely harmless...
Some ass called in to the head of Mountain Operations and claimed we were "Screwing about and not doing our job properly." which we most definitely were as we were way overstaffed...
Anyways, in an alarming display of Managerial pedantics we got a call telling us to cease and desist and also to fill the hole back in...
So apparently someone revived Hitler and put him in charge of lift operations. Tomorrow is Aryan Sunday where we all dye our hair blonde and have a crack at some genocide...
I may be lying a little.

Anyways, more snow falling now so hopefully will be getting some good boarding in over the next week.

Finally have everything sent off and organised for England, so just waiting for my visa to be approved and sent back to me... Charlotte and I are maybe a little stressed, but it should all be ok, fingers crossed!
Four weeks till I get to see my Charlotte!! Awesome!!

More updates to come, stay tuned.