1400 push-ups

By Managing Editor Molly Barrieau

I now completely understand the true physicality of the term “blood, sweat, and tears”. You’re sitting there, hunched over, staring at the unending abyss of snowy mountain forest, and you can’t will yourself to get up and try again. You roll over, get on your hands and knees, and the tears drip onto the fluffy snow. The overabundance of adrenaline pumping through your body has you shaking, stress sweat soaks your clothes, muscles aching.

I tried snowboarding last weekend. How do you think it went?

I know, “you just gotta try again,” “nothing to it but to do it,” “you’ll get better the more you fall.” I don’t care. Forcing my body to comprehend rushing sideways down a steep hill full of other humans, strapped to a piece of fiberglass, scared me to the point of complete inability.

Does this make me less Canadian? I prefer not to dangerously throw myself into snow, at this point, I might as well just not participate in Roll Up the Rim.

(I take that back, sorry, eh?)

Not only did I freeze physically on the mountain, but my body rejected the whole event, making me feel about 86 years old. I couldn’t squat the next day, I constantly stretched and groaned. I didn’t consider that each time I fell, I had to push my body weight back up, time and time again, to propel myself dangerously quickly down the (bunny) hill. My arms feel as if I did 1400 push-ups.ww

Luckily, the student price for the day only cost me about $10 per an hour, so sitting in the snow was not a waste of my time. My board and boots were free from my Vancouver friend, and I never once got snow down my back. Maybe I didn’t fall hard enough.

I will give you this, winter sports, you do make people very happy. After lunch, when I let my group go on without me, I embraced the opportunity to people-watch, dad’s catching daughters as they free glide on baby skis, kids sipping hot chocolate, moms consoling frustrated young boarders.

Mount Washington was beautiful, the genuine friendliness from everyone made the day. Cheers to Derek, the medic skier who slowly skied as I walked down the hill, chatting and listening to me anxiously develop my feelings on the sport.

He told me I might try skiing.

#BringbackBeavertails

Thank you to Jon, Olivia, and Joe for helping me learn more about my fears. It was worth it just to see you curving down the hill.


Molly is a creative writing major with a modern languages minor, has a love for editing, publishing and linguistics. She is in her fifth and final year at VIU. She hopes to land a job in Montreal and open a poutine truck with her partner when she retires.