The Powder of Generosity

I cried at a movie today, within the first 10 minutes. Mighty Joe Young, Black Beauty… and Hunger Games. The popular trilogy made its way into the big city lights of Bishop, CA. The theater has a balcony for the 18+ crowds and I had a front row view of the heartache, the brutality, the vitality and the twisted metaphors of today’s government.

Hunger Games - worth they hype, if you read the book first

I went to the theater by myself, the first time I’ve ever done so, and it was just like going with someone minus the preview small talk, over-buttered popcorn and post movie small talk. If you’ve never done it before I highly recommend it, and for extra points don’t even bring your cell phone to distract yourself before the movie starts.

Last weekend with my friend Greg was the perfect antidote to my build up of unnecessary worry. Around 6pm last Friday I realized it was silly to tweak draft 683 of the The FIRST blog post and all it’s over hyped importance, so I published it as is (was), packed up some ski gear for a couple days and drove up to Mammoth to meet him. My hummus and pretzel stick stash was significantly decreased by the time I clinkered into Crest View condos in my friend’s 90 something Civic with the ghetto pimp white leather seats.

Greg and I, Mammoth in 2011

Greg’s friends were not going to arrive for another couple hours so we did what most mountain resort town folks would do – we Jacuzzied; yes it’s a verb here. We also caught up on life, teased each other about recent break ups and ridiculous moments and reminisced on last year’s epic snow season.

Two hours later we emerged overheated, pruned and relaxed to meet Woody and Eunice, who were letting us stay in their condo. I could tell right away that they were good people. Woody could make a wall laugh and Eunice weighs about 90 lbs and eats more than Michael Phelps.

Woody and Eunice making breakfast omelettes

In the morning Greg was still injured from falling on a park rail the day before, so he rested at the condo and the three of us hit the icy, slippery, cruddy slopes. Ah, what a lackluster season. We spent most of the day eating, interspersed with sliding and slipping down elevation.

That night Greg and I opted for soak #2 plus margaritas and by 9:30pm when all was well and eyelids were getting heavy Woody decided he was hungry. He took us all out to a great restaurant called The Smokeyard and treated us to (more) margaritas, samosas, salad, surf and turf and the best brownie a la mode I can remember. He not only let us stay in his place for free, he treated us to dinner.

Woody about to eat it!

Nature must respect the powder of generosity because Sunday morning greeted us with fresh snow that accumulated by the hour. Despite his limp Greg couldn’t resist the mountain, and he valiantly offered to be the gimpy photographer and sacrifice his powder day and hand circulation to photograph us. We celebrated the day snowboarding into untouched tufts of goodness and rolling down the hill. Our attempt to shred the gnar and tap the pow pow led to catching many an edge and face planting.


After Soak #3 and promises to meet up again soon Greg and I departed. The drive home was gnarly and with the intense snowstorm along the grade from Mammoth to Bishop it felt like we were entering warp speed from the Disneyland ride Star Tours. I returned to Bishop reinvigorated and reminded of the goodness of friends and amazed by yet another stranger-turned-friend’s hospitality.

V "Shredding the gnar" 🙂


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