I spent three weeks at home, training, seeing friends and family and most importantly, buying a very desirable Citroen Saxo Desire to accompany me on my travels. This being my first car, and having driven very little since passing my test last June, I woke up each day some what apprehensive about getting in her and driving around Bristol. When my friends heard I was driving to France on my own, on the wrong side of the road/car, after only a week’s driving, they were a little concerned. My friend Nina even offered to buy me extra driving lessons after witnessing a certain parking episode. I must admit I was a little nervous myself, but I wanted to go to Spain and I wanted to have a vehicle out there.
First stop was Chamonix and in the end, doing that drive was far easier than any driving I had done around Bristol, just a little bit further. I ended up spending almost two weeks in Chamonix, which was a little longer than I expected, but it was a lot of fun. I upped my time on the slopes from 3 days to 7. The improvement curve wasn’t as remarkable this visit, but I did spend more time challenging myself off piste. A very memorable day was spent skiing into the Argentiere ice falls to do a little ice route with friends Jack and Christian. We also skied the Vallee Blanche – which felt hard for me, but completely worth it. And towards the end of my stay, temperatures grew and I actually got two days of rock climbing in. All in all a good start to my European adventures.
Or not? There was talk of an extreme alpine mission, i.e. skiing in to a big winter route. But I found that skiing was way more fun, and not quite so cold. And that really, I am a rock climber, not a crampon kicking axe slinger. Maybe next time.