In several hours, one of the most watched sporting events of the year will begin. Well aware that I will be unable to watch Super Bowl XLVI or laugh at the new commercials, I decided to fill the void in my heart for football with another sport–snowboarding.
This weekend, we headed north to Mizuho Highland in Shimane Prefecture. Until Saturday, I had never set foot on a snowboard or seen more than two feet of snow. However, I am now in love with both snowboarding and snow.
First of all, the snow was beautiful. No matter my state of accomplishment or frustration, each time I looked up, the combination of snow flurries and snow-covered trees and mountains either metaphorically or literally took my breath away. Whenever I see snow, I regress to a six-year-old version of myself. My only desires are to make snow angels and have snowball fights. I may never grow out of this complete awe of winter weather.
On the other hand, my appreciation for snowboarding didn’t come as naturally. During the first two hours of my endeavor, I could not even stand. For those of you who did not get the memo–standing up is a prerequisite to actually boarding, or even falling down a mountain. At that point in the day, I would have happily done either.
With a little help and a lot of encouragement, I eventually got the hang of the whole standing-up-thing. After realizing how much I disliked standing up, I decided that I had better not fall down. Although I certainly had my fair share of falls and even a wipe-out involving a sweet Japanese woman and a frantic すみません (excuse me), this fear of standing up kept me gliding down the bunny slopes all day.
Thanks to the tips and tricks from our in-house professional snowboarder slash friend extraordinaire, we all had an incredible day in Mizuho. Tomorrow, I may have some difficulty raising my arms or climbing the stairs, but all the soreness is most definitely worth the joy of riding down the bunny slopes with all the other six-year-old children.