Downtown Monterey, Monterey, California


The other day, as I hiked down a trail with loose dirt, slipping and sliding, I flashed on a memory of my aunt Mary teaching me how to ski. I must have been seven or eight years old on the bunny hill, lace-up boots and long skis attached to my feet with an awkward feeling and face-down in the snow, wet gloves, and a snow-packed sweater.

The fear was, almost, overridden by my desire to take on the hill like the others, embracing their fear, releasing joy and laughter––vacation winter white sparkling in the sun. With some coaching, I turned my skis down the mountain and locked them in the rudimentary snow-plow. As gravity did its job, I picked up speed, and the magic of skis on snow began to surge through me.

“Lean forward and bend your knees. Lean forward, bend your knees. HaHa,” Mary cheered me on. As I recalled the experience, the memory twisted. Oh, I thought, that’s it. That’s the whole shebang––Lean forward into life with good cheer and be ready to absorb the bumps.