The madness that is Christmas and New Year has gone and all that remains are some tired seasonaires, aching livers and a nasty cold that all of the locals seem to have caught, including yours truly.
Christmas and New Year here in Chatel was off the scale in terms of how busy everything got. A town that has 1200 people in the off-season suddenly swelled to over 20,000. To compound not being able to get a seat in my favourite bars, Cheeko, Hughsey and The Afghan turned up from around the world, intent on turning their ski break into a stag do. We drank a lot and in a way, I’m glad they are gone as I don’t think I could have done much more. The highlight for them was me naked and throwing up off the balcony of our apartment just an hour after New Year struck.
Last week saw me teaching my first cours collectif group with 6 kids of various ages and nationalities for the week. It was fun and by the end of the week, my group consisted of 5 Dutch kids and one French one. The French I am fine with but by the end of the week, I think the skiing of the Dutch kids had improved beyond my ability to speak Dutch which goes to show that kids learn a lot more by seeing and doing than by techie explanations.
A surprising development today in Chatel in that it has started to rain, destroying what remaining snow there was in the village. We could really do with a couple of days of snow to refresh the slopes around the Portes du Soleil that are patchy and icy.
A full complement of seasonaires in the village means that the various local nights in the bars of Chatel are going off in spectacular style. On Tuesday I was at the School Disco night in The Avalanche Bar which went off with plenty of cheesy music to keep us entertained. There were plenty of grown up schoolgirls in attendance whilst all I could find was my original school scarf which I proudly wore all night. When school kicked out, we continued onto Sloopy’s Disco under the Super Chatel telecabin until about 4.30am when it was time to stagger home. I have a souvenir from Sloopy’s of a panama hat which I have no idea how I got but clearly was wearing all night as it is covered in beer and Jager.
January is supposed to be a quiet month but there are a few things going on like the Grand Odyssey de Savoie which is a Husky race but I think we are all looking forward to it getting back to normal before the February half-term madness.