Skiing trip and leaving Korea

Posted on December 27, 2009

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Of all the places on earth to learn to ski it had to be in Korea! I had never been skiing, but I always wanted to and finally I had a chance to do it in Korea just before going back to Lithuania. It was a perfect thing to do after the tiring exam session at Kyung Hee. Me and Kristina were invited for it by our friends Harald and Yelim. We were really lucky that Yelim, being a Korean, organised everything: the accommodation, the equipment, the passes for ski lifts and transport.

All the fun started when we got to the Vivaldi Ski resort. Yelim arranged us a ski instructor, a young Korean guy, who was probably more scared of us than we were scared of him, at least when he first saw us. He could only say a few words in English and we couldn’t speak Korean. Despite that, he proved to be a great instructor, he taught us not by telling us how to do this or that, but by showing it. At the beginning he showed us some basics, like how to stop, and the took us up on a practice slope. It was really a very gentle and short slope, more like a practice area than a slope. Nevertheless, at the beginning it seemed very scary, especially the part when I had to get off the ski lift onto the snow. Despite a few falls it all went really well, so we were taken up on a real slope. It was again quite a gentle slope, perfect to practice all the basics. We did a few turnarounds and our instructor decided we were good enough to go on the highest slope in the resort.

When we finally got on the top of the highest slope in the resort and I saw how steep it actually was, I started questioning my ability to go down. I still was not perfect in keeping my balance when making a turn and slowing down was also difficult. As a result, instead of actually skiing, I kept falling down after every few meters. And this slope was much longer than the previous one, so at one point I thought I would never make it down in one piece. Luckily, I got down safe and our training course ended. We thanked our instructor and I think he was quite satisfied with our progress, after all it was just the first two or three hours for us to ski. For the rest of the day, I had to stick with the easier slope and really polish my skills.

The practice paid off the next day, when I finally felt that I was the one controlling the skis and not the other way around. I also managed to make it down from the highest peak without falling down, disproving my prejudice that learning to ski would take weeks. For the rest of our time in the resort we could just enjoy ourselves and have fun.

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One of the slopes at Vivaldi Ski park

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Me and Kristina on the practice slope

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Yelim, me, Kristina and Harald, our last day in the resort and also in Korea

This skiing trip was a perfect way to end my four months stay in Korea. We got back to Seoul on 24th of December and I had my flight back home to Europe on 25th.

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Posted in: Korea