7: Great Spirit
During the years Jacques and I dated, our winter weekends and school breaks were spent on the ski slopes.
Skating had been replaced with skiing, (seems that I was replacing many things during those years, in particular boys).
Back to skiing, I’d get up early in the morning, pack a lunch, grab my ski equipment (skies, boots, poles, goggles and ski wax) then head off towards Merry Street.
Jacques would meet me at the corner of Merry and Bowen, from there we’d hitchhike a ride to the mountain. There was never any problem getting a ride, people back then were really great about giving kids a lift to practice their sport. But the earlier you got to the ‘pick up spot’ the better chance you’d have of hitting the hills at opening time.
If any of you have ever skied you understand the awesomeness of Spring skiing. Once you make it to the top of the mountain, you can literally strip down to a pair of shorts and let the sun encase your body in the warm ‘summer like’ weather. It’s beyond explanation!
It was not quite mid- March, Spring skiing was in full swing; there was a DuMaurier or Rothman’s downhill slalom competition taking place on our favorite trail, so it was decided that we’d meet at the Ski Chalet and have lunch together, seeing that he’d decided to ski the Grand Coulée, and I chose to ski the Three Creeks’ trail.
Once off the lift, a quick kiss and we parted ways.
The day prior, the weather had been exceptionally mild, but over night it dropped extremely low, this resulted in the snow being extremely fast. It was like skiing on ball bearings. Very difficult to control your skies, especially when your skies lacked steal edges.
Mine fit that criteria, the perfect storm was about to take place!
Being the thrill seeker I was, I was going pretty much straight down hill, and in the lowest squat position hoping to lessen the friction and to gain as much speed as possible.
I succeeded, and then, right in front of me, the patch of ice!
I tried coming to a complete halt, no way!
I hit the ice, lost control and was heading directly for the trees and just beyond that, the almost 90 degree angle drop hundreds of meters below
As I thought of throwing myself down, hoping it would slow my speed, I remember seeing the tree, and then I remember feeling like I was traveling through space.
It was like when you see a photographer doing a series of photos one after the other, you know, that click, photo, click, photo, click, photo effect.
That was followed the most beautiful stunning white light I’ve ever seen, it was blinding, yet not blinding at the same time, it was traveling counter-clockwise, like a clock going backward, and somehow I was in its inner path.
I saw my life flash by, not every event, but the ones that had cause other people grief, and I remember saying, “Please, don’t let me die, I’m not ready to go, I need a chance to repair my wrongs”, that happened just as the light was going to join or collide with it’s beginning.
From there nothing. No pain, no panic, simply nothing!
For a brief instant I regained consciousness in the ambulance, Jacques was beside me, then I slipped back into the nothingness.
At times the nothingness was not nothingness, I could see my Aunt with her blue blouse talking with Mom and the Doctor, they were discussing my fractured skull, and if I’d ever come out of my coma. I was trying to tell them that I wasn’t in a coma, I could see and hear them, but I could not speak. I was trying to flick my eye lids and to wiggle my hands and feet to let them know I was there. To let them know that I wasn’t in a coma, but no one took notice.
Even though I kept on trying to make contact, it was apparent that they did not know I could see and sometimes understand their conversations .
March 17th arrived, it was daylight, but I couldn’t tell, everything was like blotches of color, kind of like when you take a fountain pen and shake the ink out, only my blotches were of many colors. They were beautiful, they lacked any precise form, they simply remained beautiful blotches of color for a certain period of time. Time that I could not account for, because time for some strange reason didn’t have a time line.
Suddenly without warning that all changed, the blotches turned into recognizable forms, however everything was diagonal, horizontal and vertical didn’t exist.
I was conscious, I knew who I was and I was able to comprehend that I was in a hospital room, a private room. I could speak, my hands and toes were responding to my brain commands. Somehow I managed to press the red emergency button.
A nurse came in.
She hugged me.
She ran out and came back with a doctor.
I was given some tests and I guess I passed because at 10:00 P.M. they got me out of bed and with help had me walk towards the window.
I remember I was wobbly, my legs felt week, and as I looked out the window I started to cry. It was snowing!
Big, gigantic, fluffy white flakes, and here I was stuck in a hospital room with week legs and knowing that no way going to be able to ski the following morning!
My ski season had come to an abrupt halt, and I had encountered The Great Spirit! ............... <Next>