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Snowboarding requires your fly to be done up

Lillehammer, Norway


First things first.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year and all that! I trust everyone had a nice time and will get nice and messy on NYE.

So, as per the plan that we made nearly 12 months ago, we ended up in Norway for Xmas. There was however a twist to the story. Rather than spend our time in Oslo, the capital, John and Kath had the idea that it might be nice to go to the snow for Xmas. Having never seen snow on Christmas Day before and not wanting to miss out, we were quick to say yes. Now, being the snow it was necessary to do some kind of snow activity. In my case it was learning to snowboard. Sarah is a very competent skier so she was fine. Mine however was a tale of injury and aching joints!

The train ride to Lillehammer from Oslo is about 2 hours. We were fortunate enough to have an old type train carriage with compartments rather than the new ones that just have seats everywhere. Immediately we commandeered an empty compartment and the hilarity began. I can't really explain what we were giggling about or laughing hysterically for, but it had something to do with a story involving a man being bonked on the head with a plank of wood by his Mrs while she shouted surprise.

Anyways, back to Lillehammer. The little town that we stayed in was called Hafjell, about 20mins out of Lillehammer and John had very kindly organised a 3 bedroom apartment for us. Smashing little place and plenty of room in the fridge.

Second day we went and hired our gear for the snow, one snowboard for me, two skis for Sarah and a pair of boots each. The man in the shop asked Sarah "what size skis do you want?" Sarah replied "I don't know". The man in the shop than said with a rather confused (concerned?) look on his face "you don't do this very often do you?". I on the other hand sounded like the consummate professional as I requested a 154cm snowboard with "ratchet bindings please". It's important to point out at this point that I had never before been snowboarding.

John and Kath were extremely helpful in teaching me. Of course, no amount of teaching makes anyone any good at anything unless you learn something. I was learning the hard way. I did however perfect my technique of giving in to gravity, whereby I would simply throw out my arms and land heavily on my back/butt. I don't care what anyone says. Snow is made of ice. Ice is hard and hurts when you fall on it. The hurting was ok for a while. I did start to get a bit cold though. Of course it wasn't until later that I realised the reason I was getting cold was because the zipper of my snow pants was undone. So everytime I fell down (about 5 or 6 times a minute) snow would get in and make me cold. This took me about four hours on the mountain to figure out. whoops.

So the rest of the trip we spent in our little snow house, getting a bit boozy (it was Xmas after all) and nursing our wounds.

Overall a smashing trip to Norway! John and Kath both spectacular snowboarding teachers and tour guides!

Cheers!


permalink written by  haveyouseenmypassport on December 29, 2007 from Lillehammer, Norway
from the travel blog: To infinity!.. and... beyond... uh.....
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