Friday, January 14, 2005

A bittersweet ski trip, sans skiing (for me.)


I'm leaving town this weekend, full of bittersweet joy. A crew of my grad-school buds and I are headed to our annual Mountain Therapy extravaganza in the Great Smoky Mountains.

Bittersweet, as we all began school together many (many, many, oh my god many) moons ago, and this is the third and most likely last time we'll be returning to our super-fun, but horribly decorated cabin in ghetto fabulous Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Some of us will be defending our theses this year and won't be in Nashville by this point next year. I am not one of those people I bet, but more power to the graduating folk. The plan is that once the last person defends their thesis, we reunite as non-students to relax and ski with upgraded accomodations (Vail, tentatively.)

You know, since we'll be raking in the big bucks being postdocs and all. Ha. Ha.

This year, however, I am not planning to ski. I was a bit traumatized by last year's skiing excursion which ended in my going to the ER, staying there til 2AM, and wearing a neck brace for a week. Well, OK, the muscle relaxers were sleepy-nice, but I really do not recommend spraining one's neck to the point that one's face goes numb. A harrowing experience. You can revisit my description of the event as archived here.

In retrospect, I think the injury in combination with the rural hospital experience made it particularly traumatic. The emergency room in Pigeon Forge. Say it out loud. "The emergency room in Pigeon Forge." Ooh. I'm getting chills just thinking about it.

At any rate, no more skiing until I get somewhere with powdery slopes, not icy ones. Instead, I'm quite looking forward to the idea of a forest retreat which includes a few hours of reading books, listening to music, vegetating in the outdoor hot tub, and staring off into the trees. Aah.

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