Sestriere 28/01/2007


Got home, and packed a bit more and watched videos, then went and missed nightbus by a minute, so caught a taxi to Victoria. Saw sandy there and met Juzar as we bought our tickets. Got to the airport at at 6.15pm dead on time, met Ross and got the tickets checked in quickly and got some breakfast. Spent most of the flight asleep. Transfer was about 90 mins by coach we checked into the Hotel Du Col in Sestriere and were nearly in a double room, but luckily we managed to swap to a room with 3 single beds. We got our snowboards and boots then we immediately got changed and went for a run up the back of Sestriere. On a very windy route that was very snow covered. We climbed for nearly a quarter of an hour before turning back quite breathless. We got changed and went downstairs to the bar. We moved on to the Irish Igloo bar for a talk by the flight reps and get our lift passes. We drank in there for a while and then went into dinner we had an as much as you could eat buffet and you could have wine with your meal as well. We continued to drink after the meal in the bar and organised ourselves into groups for the next day.
Up early for breakfast at 8pm then out snowboarding. Very painful at the start and incredibly warm. So I took it easy and came in for breaks, gradually lost some of the body armour and asjusted my kit and started to do better. Found a softer patch of snow to practice in that made things a lot easier. In the evening we met as usual in the bar Matt had gained a concussion and Tom was on painkillers for a fall and had had an xray. After dinner we headed over to the Irish Igloo bar. Here they were giving away shots and playing a game were speed drinking was important. My time of 1.57 secs was the best for 8th day, but no were near the record. We moved on from the irish igloo to the cavern. Here we played drinking games and Sandy, Charlotte and Matt took part in a boatrace. On then to pinkies the german bar were we sat in cubicles for a while and then later the peoples bar were they poured beers down our throats. I then made it to the nightclub, but was the only one, so came home.
Not up early for breakfast felt quite rough. Combination of hangover and altitude effects from the run. Did get out and go snowboarding, but didn't get any further than the first day. Did get out and run the hill and got further but I walked a significant portion, listening to Al Murray on the podcast. In the evening I made it down for food and stayed a little bit later but eventually retired early, still feeling quite rough.
Woke fully recovered went to breakfast and got out on the slopes early made pretty good progress and after meeting up with folks for lunch, I manged to figure out stopping on the board, which made things a bit more comfortable. Came back at 3.30 PM again, and ran up the hill again, it was really tough and the snow made it difficult but I made it to the top at least 500m up. Lungs seemed to have adapted. Was quite a risky descent through mud and ice, but got down safely. Then into skiing kit to go out on skidoos. Juzar, Sandy, Clare and Ian and Caroline were along. We set off with Juzar behind the guide and then Sandy me and then Clare. We set off straight away and were quickly onto a windy road with a steep drop in the dark though the moon was full and there was no cloud. I started to hang back and then gun the motor and at one point we got to 85KMh. When we got back they allowed us to race round the track I quickly overtook Juzar and Sandy on my big machine, and even managed to get in an extra lap, though I nearly flipped it at one point, and span the tail 90 degrees on another. We got back and had dinner then watched the football for a bit, before heading to the igloo bar. There was a bannd on which was very hairy and consisted of two drummers ad a guitarist, the silver tongues, nevertheless we did a serious amount of jumping around to them. I nearly went to the nightclub afterwards but had to get cash and lost the party.
Was up and had breakfast but didn't feel much like snowboarding. I was a bit stiff in places. Me and sandy wandered about town shopping and we got some snacks and spent some time videoing this chap who was trying to slide down some stair rails outside our flat aided by a tow from a quadbike. He eventually made it after we got bored videoing. Only about half of us for dinner in the evening as part of the party set off for a torchlit ski to a restaurant. We all met up back in the bar afterwards though.
Up early for breakfast and up for boarding had 3 good long goes and I was going down slopes longer and steeper than the beginners run, but it was getting difficult to find good pieces of snow. By the afternoon I just had on a tee shirt and a cap, having ditched kneepads and helmet, so I had more movement and didn't feel too much in danger of falling badly. Came back to the Hotel and got ready for bobsleighing. We caught Taxi's to the olympic bobsleigh run and got kitted out with serious helmets and back braces. I was the last to go from 8th day andwent with another english couple. I got to go in the back and it was very extreme, the bob reaches 125kmh and you just have a bit of rope to hang on. The hard seat bashed my spine relentlessly at every bend. The G force was very extreme forcing your head down and your head bashed from side to side on the bobsleigh itself, it also felt like our sled and my head touched the course at one point which was pretty scarey. When we got off I immediately had a large red bruise on my back. We picked up our photos and caught the coach back to the hotel and went straight into dinner. After dinner we talked in the bar for quite a while and then about fifteen of us headed off to the disco, I was the only one to get a 2 for 1 deal on my drinks so got two bottles for ten euros. We had a very good dance and got a large settee area to ourselves. I didn't stay too long as I was hoping a nights rest would help my back recover.
Back was a lot better but still a bit tender, so after breakfast I returned my snowboard and packed my kit and took some video of the resort and some snowboarders doing jumps. Sandy came back about 3pm and we ran up the mountain to the place I had got to before then climbed up even higher to the cable car. We took some video and a picture of what looked like a bear track. We completed the lomg run down without incident then watched england beat scotland at rugby. I went to dinner and stayed a while in the bar but after videoing some of our number skating from the bedroom window I just stayed there.,br> 04/02/2007
Up early in the morning for the flight the coach trip was fine but a very long queue at the airport for check in. A very long queue for security and another to get on the plane. The flight was delayed an hour but passed pretty quickly there was a delay in picking up our bags but after that I travelled back with Felicity, Amanda, Catrina and Sandy to Victoria before going our separate ways. I finished the holiday with a nice chinese meal from the local.



8th Day UK