He read the hometown on my uniform nametag and stated, “I grew up in the same town.”
“Cool, have a good ride,” I said, tucking him into the chairlift. But he came back again for another lift and then he kept on riding my ski lift all day, and by closing time had finally worked up enough nerve to ask me on a date.
We decided on an afternoon of cross-country skiing to take a break from our usual downhill days. The day started off well with an inch of fresh snow and Colorado blue skies over our heads. Our rented cross-country skis glided along the trails with ease. Cross-country skiing is a lot more work than downhill skiing and each time we climbed a hill we were huffing and puffing by the time we reached the top. Strangely, at the top of each hill he would fall in the snow at the side of the trail, then ask me to help pull him up with his pole. Strange, I thought, why does he keep falling, he’s a good skier, and we were tired, but not exhausted.
In addition to huffing and puffing along, he was spitting phlegm and blowing snot rockets along both sides of the trail. I was disgusted and just mainly tried not to notice. Out of sight, out of snot – just hoping he would run out of the stuff at some point.
Toward the end of the trail loop we had selected, he had frozen spittle and booger streams frozen into his beard. He fell one more time onto the shoulder of the trail, and this time when I grabbed his pole to help him up, he pulled back hard enough to make me land in the snow next to him. And quickly he leaned in for a first kiss.
“Look, a moose!” I pointed to a nearby dark tree stump, rolled myself out of the snow and skied away as fast as I could because I was sNOT going to kiss that.
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