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Val d'Isere Apres Ski Report
18th January 2013

Magically transforming beers and horses on snow

Maybe we needed a week for our New Year’s resolutions to kick in or maybe it was the fantastic -24 degree weather we’ve been having this week, but either way, we’ve been behaving. Or at the very least, we’ve been working on it, reminding ourselves that our little Euros could be spent on something other than apres-ski! Needless to say, we could be trying harder to stay in control…

With the weather being cloudy, cold, and at times, snowy, we’ve been forced to stay inside longer than our regular hours normally allow. For some, this means finding refuge in their lovely studio apartment with their three roommates and for others, this means taking advantage of the unbelievable deals all Val d’Isere bars have to offer. It can’t be helped; we are merely victims of external forces getting us to drink!

One afternoon this week was spent at Le Saloon Bar where we got a little carried away with their 2 pints for the price of 1. Having been forced inside after a morning of poor visibility and heavy winds, we started our après-ski with lunch at the Petit Danois for their delicious spicy chicken wrap. Somehow, we wrangled some free Génépi shots upon our departure for the Le Saloon Bar and we should have known that that moment would be pivotal in our ability to remember the afternoon. Getting to Saloon, we chose our spot at the bar with rigor, calculating our chances at being served continuously and were unceremoniously drunk by 18:00. A couple of songs into the Live Music set, and we were a little gone! So gone in fact, that we managed to convince complete strangers to give us their beers and bring them to last season’s workplace. I’m not fully sure how many beers actually made it there but I always like a good drunken mystery. Thankfully, no pictures were taken!

Finally braving the freezing night air, we made it out Le Petit Danois for a beer or two one night only to find that our pints were tasting strangely like rum and cokes. Funny how the Danois can do that… We weren’t the only ones on an apres-ski rampage; it seemed that everyone was ready to go! Some lovely British girls took on the night granny style with their graying hair, old lady purses in hand, and the added pounds of old age under dresses made from curtains. Clearly, with their old lady attitude, we became instant friends! Speaking of friends, one of ours had quickly disappeared and was found in the most unexpected places: among an entire group of people dressed in Where’s Wally costumes!

Trying to make up for our antics earlier in the week, last night was spent watching the 5th annual Val d’Isère Polo Masters. Hosted in an arena constructed on top of the Centre Aquasportif at the base of La Face, the Polo Masters brings in some of the world’s best polo players for games played on snow with a red blown up plastic ball. As it would happen, because of the cold, the horses must be rotated through multiple times during each 40 minute game. This gave us plenty of time to grab some of the liters of soup and ‘vin chaud’ available to keep us warm during the games and not miss a beat! Seeing the horses move around on snow was really impressive, especially considering how many people end up slipping and sliding all over town. With the first two games of the competition played, the players and horses will surely continue stepping up their level in the days to come. 

Bon apres and stay warm!



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