Happy New Year to you all. God it feels like FOREVER since I actually sat down and just wrote.
Six weeks…..yes that’s how long I’ve been here in the Alps!!!!! It feels like I’ve been here for about 4 months. I had planned to do this post within the first 2-3 weeks but of course we had training week then our first guests and before we knew it was Christmas. December was VERY VERY long. I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t all fun & games. It was extremely hard work and at times all I wanted to do was go home. I worked Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Stephen’s Day, New Years Eve and New Years Day so as you can imagine it was hard. It wasn’t as much being away from home, it was more the long hours that we were all doing.
Christmas Day on the slopes in Courchevel
So here I am working in the Alps for an Irish ski company with 10 other Irish people including my fiancée Andrew. We are living and working together everyday so it’s quite intense. Thankfully working with Andrew has actually been great and we haven’t had any major bust ups 🙂 There is one thing that I’ve learned from every job role before now and that is that you cannot get on with everyone. With so many different or similar personalities, you are bound to clash. The group consists of Sam, Julie, Anna and Orla who are all chalet hosts, Angela who is our admin gal, Andrew who is our handy man & driver, Conor, Sinead and Shona are our fabulous chefs, then Caroline runs the entire operation and I pretty much help everyone out 😀
Most days I’m awake at 6.20/6.25am so it’s an early start. I get up, get dressed and I’m out the door by 6.55am. I’m either hosting in a chalet, doing resort shuttles to and from the ski areas or I’m helping out with managerial jobs. It’s none stop depending on the day until about 11/12. We were working way more than that in December but now making sure to get out at 11 and get up the mountain. I’ve actually been dying with a throat & chest infection for the past ten days which has been so hard to get rid of. For example, today it was -13 degrees up the mountain so as you can imagine it’s hard. It’s all about the layers up the mountain. Thermals, gaiters, under gloves and warm socks are a must. Today my hands got so cold I could barely even feel them.
After we get out of work, it’s into our ski gear and on the closest chairlift. If your new to my blog then you won’t know but I’ve been snowboarding now for 10 years & it’s a complete obsession. I just love it. The adrenaline rush you get is INSANE!!!!! I am based in Meribel which is a beautiful little town situated in the Three Valleys. The Three Valleys is the world’s largest ski area and there is just so much ski runs to do. I have never been to Switzerland, Austria, USA or Canada so I can’t comment on how they are over Meribel but the Three Valleys is well worth the trip. Andrew and I definitely plan to do Whistler in Canada in the coming years. It’s been a dream of mine now for a good while so I have to make it happen. There are all different levels of skiers and snowboarders so between the 11 of us we are kind of in 3 groups. Sam, Julie and Anna are incredible at skiing so they tend to go out together quite a bit. Myself, Andrew and Orla are the only snowboarders so we stick together along with Conor the chef who is at a similar level. The rest of the group are either just above beginner or learning to ski.
Orla and I up the mountain this week in -13 degrees
Being up a mountain everyday at altitude is actually really exhausting. I am not talking about snowboarding, I am talking about working at altitude. For the first few weeks, we were all so tired and I was constantly napping but I’m over that now. It definitely makes you more tired than if you were at home. You have to push yourself to get up the mountain everyday after your morning shift. After a day on the slopes, we head home, shower and it’s back to work. We work then again in the evenings from 6-9/9.30 serving dinner and doing shuttles for the guests. Sometimes you might not get out until 10 so you can imagine how tired you are after that day?
As I write this, we have just had our first big snowfall. It’s a complete white out up there on the mountain and you can barely see in front of you. I was happy to stay down and blog instead. I’m actually trying to sort out getting a massage this afternoon. Seriously my body is aching and I can feel my whole body getting super stiff. I had a great day up there yesterday & I’ll be back up again tomorrow so it’s fine. Tomorrow it’s Seasonaire Squad at La Folie Deuce which is an insane bar up on the mountain. If any of you have watched my snaps then you will know what I’m talking about. It’s a restaurant/bar that has singers, acrobats, dancers, saxophone players, guitarists and a DJ playing everyday. It’s like a show more than anything and is somewhere I recommend to anyone coming here. I tell the guests to even bring their children as the dancers love seeing younger people there too. They even take some of them up on the stage with them. As we had not got a massive amount of snow the past few weeks, I spent a lot of time at Folie. Tomorrow is a day for all the seasonaires. They have discounts for all of us and it’s a big fancy dress day so it should be good fun.
The day we decided champagne was a MUST at Folie 😉
My brother Hugh arrives next Sunday for a week so I cannot tell you how much I’m looking forward to that. It will be his first snowboarding holiday and I know he’s going to be addicted. He is coming over with his girlfriend Tori and her best friend. One of the chefs Conor, well his sister Grainne and her boyfriend are also coming next week so it is looking to be a crazy week I reckon. Hugh has already told me that he wants to end up in Folie everyday. He watched my Snapchat and fell in love with it, so that is definitely something to really look forward to now next week.
Up until now between working so much and being sick, I haven’t been loving my time here. I am always so honest with my followers and tell you guys exactly how I am feeling. I mean don’t get me wrong I love snowboarding but for the past few weeks I wasn’t getting up the mountain that much and it was difficult. I know so many of you mailed me and snapped me about my absence from social media but genuinely it’s because I’ve been so busy I had not had the time to do anything. The directors did tell us that December is a difficult month in general and you end up working so much. They say that January is easier which I reckon it is as I’m actually sitting down to write blog posts again. Things are only going to get better now. I’m only going to be here another month so I am going to make the most of it and then it’s back to the grind with my new contract starting at the end of February. To think that I will have lived here for 3 months at that stage is CRAZY!
So until then guys…..I’ll be back in two weeks with more updates on my life in the Alps.
I’ve just also finished another couple of blog posts today:
- Preparing For A Ski Season (all about doing a ski season)
- My Goals 2017 (all about my plans for this year
- Allergy Testing…my thoughts! (I got this done before I left)
I will be starting my MEET GIRL BOSS posts next week too. I’m just finishing off my first one with the fabulous owner of Cari’s Closet, Lisa Kavanagh.
Here is just some of my photos from my time in the snow so far.
Love Aoibhe xxx
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