If there was no gravity…

At Toastmasters last night, I was asked to do an impromptu speech about what I would miss the most if there was no gravity.

I said I would miss having order in my life because with gravity, at least you know where things would be. For example, in the office, I know exactly where to find my recorder, my pen, my notepads and my Post-its–all of the things that help make my day that much easier at work. Without gravity, that order would be gone. Not only will I not know where things are, I’d probably be overwhelmed with the floating items all around, some of which can be safety hazards. Just imagine turning your head and a pair of floating scissors mysteriously appears, just missing your eye by an inch. Not good.

Anyway, another thing that I would miss is downhill skiing. Although there are days when it scares me, I really enjoy this sport and gravity plays a huge role in it. Without gravity, there would be no downhill skiing!

Although I must admit, it would be great if somebody devised a tool that would allow me to use selective gravity. If I had a switch that could turn gravity on and off, I could eliminate the risk of a face plant on the slopes. Or I could switch gravity off for a few seconds while loading the heavy ski gear or when I’m walking in ski boots so I don’t have to carry all that weight. Just let the skis float and gently slide them into my backseat. Won’t that be great?

But if it’s even possible, it’ll take zillions of years before anyone even comes close to inventing a gravity switch. So with skiing, I’ll gladly take the good with the bad. If one day we all wake up and realize that gravity had vanished during the night, I know I won’t be the only one missing this sport.

As much as the possible consequences from gravity mess with my head when I go out skiing, today I came out as the victor. Thanks to my ski instructor Meg. In my last lesson, I found that when making turns especially in steep slopes, I tend to automatically lean back. As a result, I become really unbalanced and unable to utilize full control of my skis by the end of the turn.

Today, I really concentrated on executing perfect turns–first, straightening then turning my skis while leaning forward into the turn, then getting back down on the balls of the feet, with shins touching the front of the boot as I complete the manoeuvre. On top of all that, I had to remember the “newspaper” move–hands forward (like reading a newspaper) and relaxed while the poles drag in the snow. As a beginner, I find it takes a lot of concentration when executing all of these in just a few seconds. But after I completed a turn correctly, it felt like I’m swooping, just like Meg described it.

We went on a green run for warm up and two blue runs. (Yay, two blue runs!) So all in all, today was another great ski day. Thank God for gravity!

For those who are interested, Ladies Ski Day happens every Thursday at 11 a.m. For $60, you get a two-hour lesson plus lunch at Mantles restaurant. Just head to the meeting area in front of Sports School or phone 250-578-5505.

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