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I am the perpetually novice skier. I’ve been downhill skiing since I was 19. I’ve been cross-country skiing since I was 28. But years (heck, decades) can go by between outings. Every time I do go, the downhill slope looks as daunting as the first. Then I ski down it and a hint of muscle memory returns. Then again, a bit more. Every time on cross country skis, I freak out when the trail turns and drops. I can turn. I can descend, but not simultaneously!

I was feeling somewhat sad about this. How is it I am six decades along in life and still skiing only the easiest of runs. But after a three-day weekend of doing both kinds of skiing, I realized, this is me. Perpetually novice skier. So I will just enjoy all the best parts of it and laugh about the tumbles.

The best parts: three days in a cabin on a lake with the amazing Craig and the wonderful Isaac. Beautiful mountains, stunning night skies. Occasional encounters with people in an actual sleigh being pulled by a muscular clydesdale. Feeling that muscle memory return.