The school year here, in our Canton, is more like the year-round system. Only 5 weeks for summer with loads of holiday breaks throughout the rest of the year.
Less than a month since the Christmas holidays and we’re already on another two week break. This one is called the Sport Break. In case it isn’t clear how you are expected to spend the break, this is the time when everyone goes skiing.
As we’ve become accustomed, our Swiss family have provided the formula for a perfect get-away. A family home in Davos, the highest city in Europe, from which you can access multiple ski hills by gondola right in town. Fun!
Less fun was the idea of how we’d manage to get ourselves, our skis, boots, poles, helmets, snow gear, clothing and our sanity onto the train. Manolo was confident it would be no problem. I was equally confident it would be a big problem.
Having coined the nickname “Airport Anna” for me to identify the alter ego of mine which takes over during the transport phase of our family vacations, it was surprising that he was willing to take this on.
In my defense, “Airport Anna” is the response to being responsible for all travel & packing logistics for the lot of us while everyone else attempts to lose things, forget things, be late for things, and general tom-foolery in an attempt to sabotage our departure. The result is that I need to become a bit intense (read: scary) to keep us on track.
Over the years I have done a lot to keep Airport Anna at bay. I would even say that our biggest airport trip ever, our move here, there was no sign of Airport Anna. Perhaps that is because Weepy Anna had taken over.
This may be why we RV. I hand over full control of travel logistics to Manolo as we pull out in our well packed and organized home-on-wheels. (You’re welcome Family.) Plus I can sit in my chair with a drink. Gin and tonic helps everything.
I am not proud of Airport Anna but I can guarantee that if ever she would come out it would be while attempting to go on a week long ski holiday by bus & train. Thankfully our family came to our rescue and loaned us a car.
Yesterday I went to collect the car. Standard – of course it is.
I was taught to drive on a standard. (This is one of those “one day you’ll thank me for this” moments. Thank you Ma!) It had been a good 18ish years since I have driven stick. Add to that my total dependence on public transit for the last 7 months and I was less than confident.
Turns out it’s just like riding a bike! I can totally still do it. Yay me!
Correction, the phrase “just like riding a bike” is a misnomer. For any adult who has not ridden a bike in many years, getting back on can be scary as hell. It takes a while to build up that confidence.
But not driving stick I tell ya, smooth sailing!
One more hockey match before we could leave town. Back to the train. Having a car is amazing but European sized cars are not designed for Canadian sized hockey bags.
Just this week I saw a campaign from the US (non political, can you believe it!?) for bringing kids’ hockey onto smaller sized rinks. The argument being that a full sized rink is meant for full sized bodies and that kids’ ability to enjoy and thrive at hockey may be increased with a smaller ice surface.
Taking a page from the European minor league hockey book. It’s been odd for us playing on a third of the ice. That is, until last night. The ice was still split in half but this time it was split lengthwise. Bowling aisle style hockey…odd. Not so sure this is the right approach either.
Hockey gear traded in for ski gear and we are set for our next adventure.
Thankfully we’re headed to Davos with Manolo’s cousin and his family.
They have a minivan.
They took all our skis, poles, boots and helmets.
God bless them. To think we were going to attempt that by train!
No sign of Airport Anna whatsoever!