Today is back-to-the-real-world day. You know, the world with the fabric covered boxes, fake lighting, air that comes from big silver pipes and roof top boxes, and the expectation to sit still for eight hours while staring at a computer screen. I’m thankful that I work for a company that doesn’t have a crazy dress code, so I don’t need to break out the heels and skirts, but I do need to put away the beanies and neon snow pants.
I’ve been mulling over what to write for awhile as I wanted to say something inspiring instead of just whining about how snowboarding is infinitely better than working. But as one fellow adventurer said, she didn’t know what the lessons learnt were right away. It takes time and reflection.
I can say that I know I’m going to miss a lot about the past 60 days, but it’s none of the things that one would expect. As I was sitting in the lodge of my home mountain yesterday looking out over the happy visitors, excited children, and listening to live music upstairs, I realized that I was going to miss that. I’ve come to love this industry full of excitement, passion, and a shared commonality between all who visit. While we may not get along at all times, it’s actually quite remarkable when you take a moment to think about what truly happens at a ski area. Thousands of people come together constantly to share, cooperate, and be active. I can’t think of anything else like that.
I know that this trip has changed my perspective and outlook on life, but I don’t know yet how it will have changed me in the real world. I know that I can talk to a completely random stranger about his 57 years on the slopes, teach a child to snowboard, move at the speed of light to find ski patrol when needed, and conquer my fears and hesitations when I’m standing at the top of an insane trail. I dream big now and I want to live big.
While the sabbatical portion of the adventure might be over, the adventure itself it certainly far from done. I feel like I just got started on a part of living life big, so there’s no way I’m stopping now. So, what’s the future of this adventure? Well, there’s still a ton of reviews to be done and a bunch more ski areas to visit. Once winter has passed, I’ve decided to keep up with trying to review the adventures New England has to offer (mountain biking, rock climbing, zip lining, etc.). More to come soon!