Less Sophistication, More Dislocation

Less Sophistication, More Dislocation

As I approach my third year skiing again - I thought I would share you a memorable tale of a time that I was on the slopes in Val D’Isere, France. As life goes, this of course happened, just when I became confident on the slopes. Or at least filled with a false confidence. 

I flew down Madeline with very little issues. Madeline is a green but (apparently) a blue in most parts of the world. Someone did tell me this, I am not just saying. Honest.


I spent the majority of my first year rolling down Madeline, so I was delighted that I could get down her without much hassle. 

I bumped into a few of my friends who were about to go down a blue. Sure, a piece of piss. 

We flew down, I let them go ahead because, for whatever reason, I wanted space to zip across the slope. Our ego was clearly way out of control at this point. 

Also, a blue, by the way. 

There was one tricky bit of the slope where it gets quite steep, it actually was the cause of one of us to break a rib last year, but I weathered that storm. With ease. 

Then, on a very flat bit. It all went pear shaped. Unsure what exactly happened but I don’t think I was pizza or French frying - the classic mistake. And whatever I did, I flew forward. And only one shoulder came with me. 

Instantly, I knew something was wrong. The pain was ridiculous. Like unbelievably bad. It was that kind of pain that makes you act in a very efficient way. Instantly, I jumped off my shoulder and ripped my headphones out and threw off my gear. Not out of bravery or being able to withstand desperate pain - but in the fact that anything could relieve it. 

Fun fact - my initial thoughts when I crashed was that I need to pause my iPhone. Ironically, I was listening to Westlife’s “Flying Without Wings” when my shoulder decided to try and make a quick escape from my body. So, I needed to make sure the iPhone was paused - and maybe turn on some Metallica to stop any suspicion. 


I was left lying on a bizarrely flat part of the mountain. Knowing that I was in quite a bit of bother. An elderly lady glided over to me to assist. She was amazing. She was my slope mother. Did all the thins that you want your mother to do when in huge amounts of pain. Hold your head, tell you that it is fine (even though it definitely isn’t) and told you mundane stories about her life to distract you. 

Shortly after, a french ski instructor zipped over. Thankfully it was not my particular ski instructor from the day before, I would not have been able to bare his disappointment. Our French Ski instructor had a phone to call for help. He took off my jacket and when seeing what a disaster my shoulder was in - instantly told me to lie down and he would get help. 

I was not feeling great at this point. I could not really see my shoulder particularly well, maybe I could but just did not want to. 

A very pleasant lady on a snowmobile came up to see me. She assessed the damage and knew that we needed to head down the mountain. 

As I climbed onto the snowmobile, the elderly lady yelled at me; 

“Tell everyone that it was a black!” 

And drifted into the distance.

What a legend. 

Now & Then #1: Harare, Zimbabwe

Now & Then #1: Harare, Zimbabwe

Introducing the Now & Then Podcast

Introducing the Now & Then Podcast