The Slopes


The Slopes Essay, Research Paper

8:02 a.m. Saturday. It’s still dark, as usual, on these cold, winter days. Everybody else is

still sleeping and enjoying the comforting heat of their beds. I crack open the locked window by

my bed, an act some deemed downright idiotic. I strip off my pj’s, throw on my robe, and head for

the shower.

Drying off, I think about where I am about to go. I dress piece by layered piece. I can’t

wait to hit the slopes! I round up my tools: body, boards, boots, bindings. Everything is in

working order and ready for take- off. As I open the front door, I am shocked by the cold and

fight my way through the wind to my car. I turn the key and put the heater on full blast. I am

almost there.

I step out of my car and survey the parking lot. Not too many cars. That’s the way I like it.

I take a deep breath and savor the frsh air. Already, I can feel the pressure of deadlines lifted off

my chest. I strap my skis on, and prepare not just to tackle a run but other situations in my life as

well. I skate over to the first pitch of the double diamond slope, and map out where I will take the

first couple turns. It is almost like I am assessing my goals in life: getting accepted into Syracuse,

owning a house in Colorado, raising a healthy family.

I appreciate the sound of carving the first turn as if it was my very last. The crunching of

the snow under my feet empowers me to crush the antagonists in my everyday life. The second

and third turns secure my self- confidence. Only with the fourth turn do I start to realize that

things are not always that easy.

I heard it said often, “It’s easier said than done.” I never believed it until now. I only skid

slightly over a patch of ice, but it is enough to start my heart thumping. I am suddenly aware that

to finish this run or to reach my goals, I have to be ready for the tricky spots. I know that at any

moment I could fall and be forced to start over. My lifetime goals can be affected by any number

of things – grades slipping, drugs and alcohol – and I have to be ready to handle anything.

I clear my mind of all fear and continue through turns, but with more caution. Once the

focus of my goal is on track, I persevere to attain it. I quickly aquire my rhythm. I become more

determined. Now, I take sharper, shorter turns. I glide swiftly toward the chairlift just now

appearing in my sights. I know that through hard work I can achieve these realistic goals! I am

almost there!

I thrill at the prospect of conquering this hill. I feel proud of myself. I am gratified to know

that I can accomplish a goal endurance. I can achieve despite the many ice patches I encounter. I

ride the lift back to my car. I only came for one run, the run to help me survive the week. I drive

home grinning ear to ear

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