After a week of battling with my group and trying to control the unruly teens, today we finally had a really good day. Most of the week has been spent quashing my anger and desire to turn four annoying boys into a human kebab with my ski pole as they constantly moaned, whined and questioned everything in the week but today, something clicked and the new big group of nine high level skiers were tolerable, on the line of pleasant, to ski with. Maybe it was the scolding and withdrawal of a prized trip to their favourite hot chocolate stop yesterday or maybe it was just end of the week positivity, but today they were a good group.
We skied some off piste and did some jumps and we even found some powder and some small cliff drops (they saw a cliff, I saw a boulder). These exciting and adventurous routes seemed to appease the group, but also feed a hunger to do more routes in the grey area of their school policy. The main worry came when one of the original four irritants took a substantial tumble off the piste.
This kid had seemed silent and calm on the first few days but when the new members joined they catalysed his need to misbehave and brought out his deadly side. This combination of silence and deadliness is often reserved to describe a fart but as this kids attitude stank the last few days it only makes it more fitting. Today’s vexation with the fart child was that at every opportunity, and there were plenty, he would bomb towards the top of the group before stopping suddenly to spray the rest of the class with snow. Normally, I’d let a one-off spray slide, but seeing as it got as low as minus seventeen degrees today and he soaked students and me numerous times I wasn’t having any of it. So when he shuffled up to the top of drop and debated plunging off the meter high rock, I waited expectantly. Having seen him shakily land a few jumps earlier he didn’t fill me with confidence as he hesitated at the top. And then he plopped off. Leaning too far forward straight into heavy snow, his skis hit the ground, he went flying over the top of them and somersaulted a few times through the snow. Both skis off, poles dispersed and covered in snow, after checking he was alive I felt a horrible sense of payback that he was now digging snow out from under his coat. Happy then that he was safely soaked, looking back it seems rather unprofessional and you’re probably reading this gasping at how horrific a person I am, but you haven’t met this group and it’s been a long week and it’s the little things like kids getting a face full of snow karma that gets me through.