Monday, December 1, 2008

Feel the Excitement

For the past three weeks we've been chilling out here in Mauritius, fulfilling our goal of "being" more than "seeing" or "doing". We've spent lots of time on the beach, the patio, the spa, the couch, the chaise lounge. However, it recently occurred to us that we're leaving in less than a week, meaning that we realized that there was a whole bunch of STUFF that we hadn't done yet -- meaning that every single day for the next five days is scheduled to the max. (This means we're doing one thing a day, usually in the afternoon for a few hours, but for us, this is a seriously packed schedule. How will we ever return to a full-time work routine?)

Yesterday we had our first-time-ever water skiing lessons. One of my awesome cousins organized a lesson with his instructor, and we spent our afternoon on the beautiful beach at the Trou au Biches Hotel, here in the north. We took turns at the skis, and BG was delighted to discover that water skiing is, like, totally easy, man, and almost exactly like snow skiing except for the sun and water and the fact that you're wearing a swim suit and life jacket instead of 24 layers of polar fleece. This means that he aced the lesson, and didn't even have to use the beginner bar or short rope, but went straight to the advanced long rope and skimmed along the waves without even getting his hair wet.

On the other hand, Catherine and I had a bit more of a struggle. Kenny, our instructor, took one look at us and recommended that we start with the beginner bar instead of the rope, so that we could get used to the feel of skis and so he could shout instructions to us as we learned. Getting up was the hardest part. My feet kept getting crossed with the skis, just like in snow skiing. I ended up on my stomach with my feet behind me and also above me, just like in snow skiing. My knees felt all funny, just like snow skiing.

I guess it really is just like snow skiing after all. I forgot how bad I was at snow skiing.

Anyway, once up, the skiing was fine. Kenny made us do squats while moving at 1000 km/h, or whatever speed we were going at. I graduated to the long rope by my third pass, and finally got to feel the exhilaration (and terror!) of skimming on top of the waves while standing.

The skiing had to come to an end after about an hour because we were way too tired to do any more -- three weeks of sitting on your butt will do that to you! We opted to have Kenny take us out for a spin on a couple of inner tubes -- Catherine sat, firmly wedged and solo, in one tube, and BG and I lay on our stomachs on the second and held on for dear life. We ended up on our sides, on our backs, on our stomachs. We went airborne, we got soaked. We screamed a lot; I'm sure we ruined the tranquility of the day for the poor tourists relaxing on the beach.

***I interrupt this post to tell you a story. I went tubing with a friend once. Said friend and I held onto the inner tube, our legs and torsos in the water. At one point, the driver accelerated so hard that her bikini bottoms were whisked off of her body and down to the bottom of the lake, never to return. We went back to shore with a life jacket over her bare butt. I have a fear of tubing for this reason. I'm happy to report this didn't happen to us yesterday.***

We finally returned to shore, breathless and excited, but also slightly thankful to be alive.

Today we'll hike the tallest mountain in Mauritius, the Black River Peak. It's a staggering peak at 837 m, and I'm nervous, as I am every time I climb a mountain.

One more week. One more week. I wish it didn't have to ever end.

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