2008 Annual Ski Trip

6 03 2008

I just got back from a 5 day weekend skiing with some great friends from Atlanta.  We stayed with Tom & Olga Griffin in Vail, Colorado.  They have graciously opened up their home to us the last three years for our annual trek out west.

This year’s trip was harder than most.  It has now been a year since I was at INJOY, and the majority of the guys on the trip are still working there. It really struck me how much I miss them and seeing them on a daily basis, working together to impact the lives of people.  I remain convinced that the Lord orchestrated my departure, and have been blessed with many wonderful opportunities and changes over the last year, but I found myself regularly reliving nostalgically times past.  It was great to spend some extended time with the guys and really just get away from it all and have fun.

Atlanta Boys Guys night at Garfinkel’s 

We spent our first day at Vail, skied Keystone day two (and even enjoyed a few hours of night skiing), and finished up Saturday back at Vail.  The weather was unbelievable.  Mid 50’s, so we were almost hot in all our gear.  The snow was great, and it was a perfect environment for me to continue to develop my less-than-stellar skiing skills!!!

 Mountain Top View David, LV & Reggie heading to the lift.

I managed to pick up where I had left off last year.  Greens were now fun warm-ups, and Blues were where I loved to stay.  As the time progressed, I was enticed to try a black.  We went to the backside of Vail and found a bowl screaming for our attention.  BIG MISTAKE!!! This slope was beyond steep, and the moguls were everywhere. It took me over an hour to painstakingly fall down the side of this stalwart of nature.

Fortunately, I got through this disaster, and some friends pushed me to try again, this time a black without moguls.  Actually, on Saturday, since it was the weekend and the weather was exceptional, Vail was crowded worse that Six Flags in the middle of summer.  A few of us traversed back a couple of peaks to try to break away from the pack.  When we got to the far peak, my friend Mark mentioned that he “conveniently” forgot to mention to me that there were only Black slopes getting back.  Once I caught my breath, I decided, what the heck, let’s give it a shot.  As we headed up the lift and I saw my approaching destiny, my heart raced, sweat began to bead on my forehead, and I was slow of breath.  This wasn’t a slope, it was a 90 degree decent into the abyss.  After I managed to muster the nerve to get close to the edge, I began.  It was slow at first, then all of a sudden, it just became fun.  We zig-zagged down the hill, got to the bottom and screamed, “let’s do it again!”  Are you kidding me??  This wasn’t even a black diamond, but a DOUBLE BLACK DIAMOND!!! I had crossed over into a new era in my skiing, and I was on top of the world (almost literally, I have no idea how high we really were!!).

 Double Black Diamond

We ended the weekend at a great restaurant in Vail village treating our hosts to some wonderful food and a great time of fellowship.  That night, as a group of guys, we sat around the fireplace and shared with each other about all God had been doing in our lives this last year since we had been there before.  It was a wonderful capstone to a fantastic weekend.  I stepped back and reflected how fantastic it is to have great friends in your life.  I am blessed!! 

LV, Gary & Reggie 




One response

6 03 2008

Oh my goodness, how fun!!! I can only imagine all you guys together….I’m glad you had a great time 🙂 When do you return from China? What are the dates you are there?

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