Ski Trip 2012 - Read the blog here!
Saturday 21st January
We will be leaving the Runnymede Centre in Chertsey at around 2pm on Saturday and spending the next 20 hours or so on the coach, arriving at Prato Nevoso in Italy on Sunday!
Clare and Jade on the other hand are lucky enough to be flying there so should be refreshed and ready to hit the slopes on Monday! That is, if there is any snow.... (reports don't look too promising at the moment!).
Here's a map of our journey...
We'll try to update the blog every night with our news and some photos - so keep checking this page for updates!
Sunday 22nd January
We arrived safely at the hotel and well ahead of schedule. We were please to see that there was more snow than we thought (although still not a huge amount). When we got into the hotel it was lunch time and everyone was really hungry. Around 5 o'clock (Prato time) we went down to get our ski stuff fitted and ready for tomorrow's first day of skiing. Everyone was cream-crackered when we had finished dinner so we washed our faces, cleaned our teeth and went off too bed!
Monday 23rd January
We woke at 6.45am ready to start the day - lots of excited faces greeted us as the staff entered the rooms!! Breakfast was a huge success...lots of cereals, croissants, ham, cheese...yummy!!! We slapped on the sunscreen and donned our helmets and goggles and headed out into the glorious sunshine!!!
To the slopes..........Everyone helped to carry their bags containing their boots and then the fun began. Ski boots firmly on, skies fitted and we were off....some more confidently than others but we all made our way to the magic carpet and up to nursery slope 1. Jade was helped into the sit ski and her adventures also began. Everyone made a slow and cautious start but fears were overcome very quickly and by the afternoon, over half the group had made it to the top of nursery slope 2. Lots of smiles and laughter from all were to be heard on the slopes of Prato Nevoso!!!! This evenings meal was eagerly consumed and tired faces made their way to bed. All in all a very sucessful first day.
Watch this space to find out further adventures tomorrow!!!!!
Tuesday 24th January
Today we needed a little more encouragement to wake up but once up and dressed we indulged in another luxury breakfast complete with jugs of hot chocolate. Once kitted up in our ski gear we were ready for the off!
The sun has continued to shine down on us making today a sucessful day all round. Today has seen Cherelle conquer the travel carpet independently only needing assistance getting on and off and despite a spectacular face dive into the snow she got up and dusted herself off and carried on!!! She has been the star of group 1 today and staff have commented on her patience and turn taking. Jade has continued to blossom on the slopes assisted by her handsome male aides, needless to say she is in command! Harry has done his first independent snow plough and has been back to the top of nursery slope 2. Lyndon continues to amaze us with his progress and has gone up to group 5!!!! He is now skiing independently down the slopes without clips...he is also the head of our dining table and clears the plates at each meal much to the delight of the hotel staff! Adam's stamina has increased greatly since last year and he continues to progress with his skiing skills having completed 17 runs down the slopes today. He is learning the odd bit of Italian which is pleasing the staff at the hotel. Lara continues to make us smile and she loves her ski instructer Francesco....who wouldn't!!!!! As for the staff...Clare and Rob have been helping out with Jade and Group 1 whilst Sam and Neil have been helping with Group 2. Tiredness is starting to set in but we will not be beaten - we took part in a movie quiz after dinner and came joint first.....not bad for a little school group!
Ciao for now!!!!
Wednesday 25th January
Well...we have officially reached half way!!
Today has had its challenges as tiredness has started to set in...HOWEVER...it has been another sucessful day here on the slopes and we have floated along on all the pupils successes.
Plates were filled at breakfast time and tummies were full as we set off to the slopes this morning. All the pupils are looking after their own kit and once down at the bottom they eagerly put on their own boots, hats and goggles. Some need slightly more help than others as we check each other and make sure that hats are on the right way round and goggles the right way up! Neil made us all laugh as he tried to put Laras boots on the wrong feet! Lara was not amused as he tried to squeeze her feet in!
Once on the slopes the achievements started!!!!! Harry followed behind his instructor, Francesco, today much to everyones delight. Jade has continued to be in command telling her aides to "go", "turn" and go "faster". She has become a bit of a speed demon on the slopes! Lyndon has taken advice from the expert skiers and has been making much bigger snowploughs in order to stop even more quickly. He continues to be a delight and is independent with taking off his ski boots and is trying very hard to do up the clips (not an easy task!!) Adam is also assisting with his own ski boots and has made it to the top of nursery slope 2 - he has been down the slope with out ski clips and is acccomplished at going solo on the magic carpet. Cherelle has also been to the top of slope 2 and has been looking after her friends by letting them have the all important "resting" chair. Her giggle remains infectious and she is most helpful with her friends. Laras biggest achievement, besides her skiing....has been eating the most enormous pizza that was made especially for her without the cheese....and amazingly she ate it all!!! We were all speechless!!!!!
Tonight we have all enjoyed pizza night in the hotel! The childrens faces were a picture at the assortment of pizzas on their tables and all diets were catered for. Our tummies were all full again!! We are all tired so after dinner we all enjoyed a quiet evening. The boys had a DVD night in their room and the girls had a pampering session. They donned their fluffy PJ's and had soft music playing whilst nails were painted! And then to bed.....very tired faces didn't put up a fight at the suggestion of bedtime tonight! And I think the Portesbery staff team will also be tucked up trying to catch some ZZZzzzzz's very soon too.
YAWN!!!!! So...we will say ciao for now! Keep watching!
Thursday 26th January
Type here Clare....Ok Neil! Another day dawns in Italy and tired eyes greeted us this morning! However our breakfast plates were full of the healthy stuff....lots of cakes and croissants with the odd bowl of cereal thrown in! Once on the slopes the pupils have continued to blossom. Jade is still addicted to the speed of the slopes and has perfected her ski scream to let everyone know she is on her way down. Cherelle and Adam are now going down the slopes without the need for ski clips. Lara and Harry are continuing to enjoy their time on the slopes and Lyndons ski leader continues to be impressed with his skiing. We have eaten more pasta....and are all experiencing different foods at meal times. Today for our dinner we have had pasta with a tomato and fish sauce and then that typical Italian dish of chicken curry with carrots!!! You can't beat Italian cuisine!!! However, everyone cheered when chocolate cake make its entrance! Yummy!
And then....the all important disco!!!!
The music was cranked up and away we went! Portesbery shook their bootie on the dance floor until we were all fit to drop! And then...bedtime! And as these words are typed, Portesbery staff are all trying hard to join in circle time but deep down all we want to do is go to bed too!!!!!! Night Night all!!!!
Friday 27th January
Today was our last day on the slopes and we have taken the time to reflect on our amazing adventures this week! We have had love blossom on the slopes - even a marriage..., eaten our body weight in pasta (or rice for Harry) and pickled our insides with the salad choice on offer everyday. Plus fears have been conquered and despite some falls on the slopes - EVERYONE dusted themselves off and just carried on!
The achivements of the students have been outstanding this year and we have been totally amazed by them. Today each pupil has continued to enjoy their remaining few hours of skiing before getting our 'glad rags' on for the medals ceremony. We managed to grab the front row so had a good view of all our pupils getting their medals and their smiles went from ear to ear - along with all of us! Each pupil was called forward and awarded their certificate and a medal and many photographs were taken - truly red carpet treatment judging by the amount of camera flashes going off!!!!
And the staff....well...our greatest achievement is that we are all in one piece and are returning all the super skiers in one piece too! We hope you have enjoyed our blog and the pictures and we look forward to sharing the stories of the slopes!!!
See you all very soon!
Love the Portesbery Ski Team!