It’s festival time in our ski resort, want to come along for the ride?
The festivals I’m used to are the Glastonbury’s, WOMAD’s and Big Chill’s, you see we used to work on a friend’s food stall. Watching the build-up and break-down of the sites, the gear, the crews, the mud, the kids trying to look oh so cool but their eyes and faces never disguised their excitement. Festivals are a world away from the world. Crazy and chaotic are two words that spring to mind as are beautiful and unique.
A festival in the Alps on the pistes now that’s a bit different, something new for me. The Portes Du Soleil have a week of entertainment planned for us, and we’ve sampled a few, some by accident some by design. Welcome to Rock The Pistes
So we are veering right off the gardening track, there will be some food later in the week and some gardening when I return home for a few days, but hang in there and come on and join in on the party atmosphere. There is Street Art, Music, and Freestyle Ski Jumping Competitions.
To host Freestyle Ski Jumping you need to create the jumps and I’ve had a heap of fun watching these take shape 🙂 First of all you get yourself a huge pile of snow, which has to come in on the back of a lorry, you then employ some young guys and machinery to knock it into shape – literally. Then you get another bunch of people together to go and jump off these, well what shall I call them? Perilous peaks? Remember this is written by someone who frankly has at times struggled to stand upright on her skis let alone ski (we have the xrays as evidence).
You get to see these mainly young guys, ski / board down a slope at speed, to then ski uphill and then jump the gap whilst creating shapes, doing backflips and somersaults, to land the other side. I think I’ll go and sit and have a rest for a while, just watching these baggied skiers was enough entertainment for this laydeee skier.
Watching them makes me wonder aloud as to the combined human effort and endeavour involved. I’m still left wondering.
Then there is the music, it’s typically a quiet time of the season and the resorts like to pull in a few more punters if they can. So various stages have been set up on the pistes, literally. The backdrops are breathtaking. Getting there and back on skis or walking is just part of the fun. There’s Rock, Reggae, Ambient, World, Electro – something for everyone. Standing in the sun, in full ski gear, sipping on a beer and listening to live music, it’s a novelty to enjoy while it lasts, and then to return to the quiet of the morning pistes, just with the birdsong and the sound of your skis for company.
And all the time there’s another bunch of, again young baggied and bobble-hatted guys, creating art pieces around the village – blank canvases are turned into works of Street Art.
It’s nearing the end of our winter escape, Spring is springing in the Alps, the melt is starting and the ski resorts are winding down. In the meantime I’ll enjoy these last few weeks of winter with some friends and food, good but technical skiing, a few walks and a bit of exploring and the thought that I need to start winding up for the return home and the gardening year ahead.