5/22/2008

My Knees, My Knees


These stairs are daunting.

It was my turn to gallery sit at Gallery 10 today. As I drove downtown I began to dread these steps. I call them an alp.

Fortunately I found a two hour parking meter on Connecticutt Avenue so I only had to walk up these stairs three times. That's 75 steps - yes, I count them - straight and steep - up.

I remember when Jim and I went to Switzerland about 20 years ago. At a charity silent auction we bid on a few days stay in a colleague's chalet in Verbier, the fabled ski resort. We were delighted when we took the bid. It was for September. Off-season. No skiing. Fine by me.

Well Jim and I trained for weeks by walking every day in our neighborhood where there are some really breath-snatching hills that make your calves burn. By September I was in top form. Ready.

We flew into Geneva and then rode progressively smaller gauge trains to reach Verbier. When the trains ran out we boarded a bus and watched through panoramic windows as the vista became wider and wider below us. Said bus dropped us in the center of the village.

A friendly soul pointed up toward a group of houses.

Forget all my training or my being in top form. Steep is daunting and this was the steepest hill I had ever encountered. As we struggled toward the houses locals headed toward the same place trotted past us. I was amazed they were walking, talking and laughing at the same time while I hoped I could keep breathing.

Four days we stayed there. Walking down at a fast clip with me dragging in the rear on the return trip.

I feel the same when I stand at the bottom of these steps - - wishing for a lift.

4 comments:

BYRSTN said...

Oh Ellouise, my knees hurt just looking at those stairs.
Betty

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