And with this final installment, our mystery Chalet Boy's season comes to an end. Not perhaps the ideal end he might have wished for, but not one that's totally unhappy. Thanks Nick. Not only for all the entertaining tales and amusing anecdotes, but also for the honesty of what you've written. Here's hoping this isn't the last we hear from you!
Well, my worst fears were realised. Another visit to yet another doctor for even stronger medication. My neck and arm just started to get worse and worse despite taking a couple of days off work. This culminated in a day of unbearable pain and I collapsed in my chalet. Next thing i know I am being taken to Moutiers hospital in an ambulance to check me over and get x-rays. Fortunately there was nothing broken, but I realised I could not go on. Two doctors have both told me I need an operation to fix the problem, and I could not carry on taking huge amounts of drugs washed down with industrial quantities of booze just to make it through work. Thank you to Clair, and to Mia in particular for her advice and for her help when i needed it most. Thanks to you both for giving me the courage to make a sensible decision for once in my life.
So here I am; back in Blighty. I have no regrets about going to do yet another season despite the risks. I did what i set out to do. Take control of my own life again, and prove to myself that I was not only capable of doing another season but killing it. I have done both these things and more... I have partied hard, and I have ridden hard too. No retreat, no surrender...
I have met some great people along the way, many of whom I know I will never see again. This is the nature of life in 'The Bubble', and like I said right at the beginning: I am not here to change the rules of engagement. That's just the way it is. I would like to say a big thanks to all the people that have made this season such a good one for me. Too many to mention by name. From my flat mates, to my colleagues and riding buddies through to many of my clients too.
After a week in hospital here in Wales, I am sat in my house in Mumbles with a collar on my neck and a long road back to recovery ahead of me. But this is not the end my friends. I have been right here many times before and made more comebacks than Rocky Balboa. Yes, I think things are going to have to change. Perhaps no more martial arts and fighting, maybe even my twenty two year snowboarding 'no-career' will have to come to an end too. If it is the end then I could not have chosen a better last day to end the journey of a lifetime on. Thigh deep powder, completely untracked with just The Skeek for company. You couldn't ask for a better parting shot than that now could you?
Some tool once said to me that "you couldn't live on just a view". My reply to him was "That depends on what you're looking at doesn't it..."
My only advice to you all is this. Never take for granted the natural magic that surrounds us all. The blue sky pow day, the dawn patrol to score a perfect offshore point break, throwing some shapes on the dance floor with your buddies after a sixteen hour changeover day. All of this and more that make the rest of our humdrum lives seem worth turning up for. Never give up. Never settle for the easy option. You will spend a long time dead, so make your time snowboarding, skiing, surfing, skating or whatever else makes you feel alive count.
A big thanks to all you people out there who have followed this blog. If you liked it, thanks a bundle. If you didn't, well go fuck yourselves I seriously couldn't care less. Or better still, find a magazine that will put your ramblings into print. I did... I think this isn't the last you've heard of me folks. I may crop up in the magazine too from time to time, and rumour has it, skiing may be okay to do with my injury. Imagine that…me… a fucking skier!!
For the very last time boys and girls I have to say,
Ciao for now.
Over and out.