Sunday, 6 February 2011

Shake A Leg!

It’s the first Sunday of the month, which means that it’s time to join in with Storytelling Sundays again.  I decided that I would try and stay seasonal with the stories as long as I can.  My story last month was Christmassy; this month’s will be wintery.

Are you sitting comfortably?  ... Then I'll begin.

When I was small my family’s idea of a holiday was to go somewhere HOT!  We would baste ourselves on the beach, hang out by the pool and get a flavour of the foreignness of whatever country had the best package deal.

So it was a real eye-opener to go on a ski trip in 1981 and be surrounded by snow, be active all day and not bother with anything about the country apart from the colour of the slopes, the number of lifts and the price of a glass of mulled wine!  Completely hooked, I spent the next few years having snow (!) much fun.

However, this all came to a sudden and humiliating halt in 1988 when I fell over during the lets-divide-the-students-into-ability-groups trials for the ski class I’d signed up for.  The slope was barely off the horizontal, so I quickly got up and carried on skiing, hoping the instructor hadn’t noticed.  But something wasn’t right.  One leg wobbled too much when it was uphill and taking the strain.  Strange. 

While I waited for the ski class to re-group I tried to work out what was going on, discovered that my knee had gained a whole new way of bending … sideways … and promptly fainted! 

So that was the end of that.  No more ski class; no more holiday.  First there was a bumpy ride, head-first, down the mountain on a stretcher to the surgery, where the doctor confirmed that I’d snapped my cruciate ligament.  Followed by a couple of days stuck in the apartment while my repatriation was arranged.  Finally, an operation to staple the ligament back in place left me in plaster for months.

“Where are the photos?” you ask. Ha - I wasn’t a scrapbooker back then, so it wouldn’t have occurred to me to make a record of any of this.  I did find this photo of the rather snazzy tailor made brace I had to wear while my muscles recovered.  Shame that whoever took the photo didn’t spot that I was wearing the lampshade as a hat!

Me in a Leg Brace

Do you want more stories?  Head over to Sian's Storytelling Sundays to see who else is joining in this month.

ETA: I am touched at how many of you have winced at the telling of this tale, so I'd like to reassure you that I only suffered a couple of seconds pain on that mountain!  Seriously! Once the ligament had snapped, there was nothing to hurt.  I suffered a lot more at the hands of my physiotherapist, but that was much, much later!


scrappyjacky said...

Love that photo....I've got a few where people are wearing some 'odd' headgear.

humel said...

Ouch!! I've never felt the urge to ski - and fear of such an injury (or far worse) is one reason why! I'm sorry that it spoilt an activity you enjoyed, though. (And I love the 'hat'!)

Ruth said...

I knew there was a reason that I'd never learned to ski!

alison290 said...

OUCH!...but makes a good story

Sian said...

Oooh, that sounds so painful I am wincing - that's how well you have told this tale! It's a great story, I love it and I really really like the idea of keeping it seasonal too. I'm now wondering what March will bring..

Many thanks for such a great addition to Storytelling Sunday jemma :)

Sandie said...

Ouch! I wonder if you have been skiing since?
Thank you for visiting my blog. You are quite right to wonder who was more nervous on Summer's first day at preschool, but I think my daughters careful preparation helped them both!
Look forward to reading more of your stories on

{Lynn - that's me!} said...

Wow...that made me cringe just reading it. You were a brave girl to undergo all of that and I didn't even notice the lamp shade until you mentioned it...all I could focus on was your brace. Glad you have the story even if you don't have photos. Thanks for sharing it with us!

Maria Ontiveros said...

Can I say you've made that brace actually look stylish!
Loving storytelling Sunday today.

Anonymous said...

Oh does this ever bring back memories. I can totally relate and I don't think I've been back up on skis since. :) Great picture even if you are "wearing" a lampshade, I've got some where I've got trees growing out of my head. said...

Great story and hat! I am sorry to say that the only bit of skiing I enjoyed was the apres ski! such a coward, and with good reason reading your story!

Mary B said...

Wow Jemma I'm surprised you were not in pain love the lampshade hat lol