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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Pokljuka part two

Hello! I bring tidings of MORE adventures at the ski camp.

The resort we stayed at had one large slope, like the main slope at Cataloochee for those in asheville, from which a part was roped off as a bunny slope. The slope did not have a chairlift to get up, it had something that in slovene was called a sidro, which translates as anchor. And that was what it looked like. You hooked one spar of the anchor or the other under your bottom and it pulled you up the hill on your skis.

The class tried to speak as much as english as possible so that the slovene children could learn english. The instructor, Ziga, asked me to tell him what the english name for the Sidro was (I didn't know that it translated as anchor then.)

It looked like a bent T, so I offered, "T-lift?"

"T-lift?" he responed, confused that I would name a ski lift after a beverage.

"Um....well, actually, I've never seen one of these in the United States so I don't know what the name is. We used "Sidro" for the rest of the week.

We had several mishaps on the sidro. I tried to pick up a dropped pole, failed, fell, and as the sidro slipped off of me it came over and bashed me on the head. I was lucky that I had a helmet on, it saved me from a nasty head bonk. If you fall, it's good, because you don't plummet twenty feed in ski boots (which is like having dumbells tied to your feet in terms of mobility.) The bad side is that you have to ski back down to the line or walk the rest of the way up.

Several times on the first day, I wove back and forth over the Sidro track. At the top, there was an irate lift operator, standing steaming next to Ziga. Ziga told me that there was a sign that said "Do not swerve on the track", and only the fact that I didn't read slovene saved me from a chew-out. Sure enough, at the boarding point on the lift, I finally noticed a yellow sign that had a cross-out of a swervy track. Oops.

Whenever I tried to spell a word with the letter Y in it, no one knew the letter because it doesn't exist in the Slovene alphabet. Avery and my teacher, Mojca, told us that "Ipsilon" was Y in slovene, so whenever I needed to spell a Y I would put on a knowing expression and say, "Oh, right. Ipsilon."

Of course, I just got the same blank expressions as before.

On the second night, there was a disco, with an old guy spinning tracks and brain-damage music. The music was ALL in slovene, so I couldn't understand. Just as well, it seemed, when the other fourteen-year (shtirinayst) boy there told me that all the music was bad. So apparently no loss, though I couldn't judge that for myself.

Then the two rowdy twelve-year-olds went and PUT THEIR EARS right next to the two-foot speakers. I was astounded.

The party ended before I could get a drink, sadly.

That morning, our floor instructor (Blaz, said Blazh) came and woke us up wearing a rubber mask of an old scottish gent. Creepy. Then, the second-in-command (Edie, said Eedie) came in wearing a Transformers mask, saying things like "I am OPTIMUS PRIME." and "We must protect the Allspark Cube." Then, right as we were leaving to ski, "Autobots, transform, and roll out!" That elicited some laughs.

Before the disco that night there was a masquerade party. I wrapped a striped fleece blanket around me like a toga (pant pant) and put on sandals with no socks and went as a roman. There were two girls as clowns, with fake orange juice-color and shartruce-color hair. A kid had his entire hands and face covered in red face paint, and there were red marks on his chair the rest of the week. One young boy, as a bandit, had his hat stolen by an older boy and spent ten minutes chasing him around whacking him with the butt of his plastic pistol.

The instructors would video the day's performances and then replay them. Aside from the main track there was a narrow one shielded by some trees that had jumps on it. On the free runs, me, avery, and the other advanced boy named Mark would steer towards the jumps. Of course, everyone followed, and for the next five minutes it would be Jump, splat, Jump, splat. So Ziga said that there would be no more jumping on the free runs.

However, on the last day, he let all of us go off the jumps once. And he videoed it, all three successful jumps and seven falls. Then they replayed in slo-mo that night. It was hilarious.

Then the last night, spin the bottle. Everyone wanted me to play but I politely refused, as if you were hit it was either kiss the spinner or play truth or dare. All in slovene. So I politely refused.

That's all for now. Look out for the next post for ever MORE adventures of Pokljuka



  1. garrett! this is so cool :D im glad to hear your having a good time, and please keep me updated!


  2. the jump, splat, jump, splat doesn't sound / look all that different than the Olympics!