Actually, I'd never said that before this past weekend. But then, as serendipity would have it, I got "stuck" at a ski resort during a blizzard. Oh, poor me.
All I could do at Canaan Valley Resort in West Virginia was ski--Nordic and alpine--snowboard, ice skate, use the whirlpool and head for the lodge's dining room for meals.
I wasn't able to shovel, figure out what to do if I lost power, experience cabin fever or stare at empty supermarket shelves.
Instead, I skied "first tracks" for the first time in my life. Got on a chair lift a little after 8 a.m. and before anyone else that day I skied pristine powder, along with a ski instructor and one other person.
We had a run called Timber Trail to ourselves. Wheeee.
Does this picture getting onto the lift look blurry? That's snow in front of the iPhone. Lots of snow. It had been snowing for 12 hours and ended up snowing a full 24.
When I went to put my skis on a rack at 9 a.m. to try snowboarding for the first time, the skis dropped down in soft snow up to the bindings.
Killer snow. Fun snow. Not an inch dusting of snow. Snow for playing in.
Next, a snowboarding lesson. Yikes, that's tiring. Fall down. Struggle up. Tip over and fall down. Struggle up. Straighten legs when they should be bent. Fall over. Struggle up. Everyone should try it!
By the end of my lesson, somehow I got it. Hips forward. Don't lean back. Pick up toes and catch the back edge. Lean forward with heels up and catch a front edge.
For this trip, I was not solo. But after taking a private lesson, I wished I had been that day. I really wanted to keep going and solidify what I'd learned.
Instead, I had to turn the board in because I had agreed to meet my travel companion at a certain time. Wifi was spotty so I couldn't let him know I wanted to continue on my own and he should keep skiing without me.
By the time I took off the board, went inside and found him, it was game over.
It was great to have my partner for the weekend but as I always stress in this blog, there are many reasons why solo travel has its advantages. Do whatever you want. Whenever you want. For as long as you want. No 'splainin" to do.
For Washingtonians, Canaan Valley is only a three-ish hour drive away. And there's plenty to do. The folks I was with were joking about completing our own pentathlon.
I did manage to ski, snowboard, cross-country ski, ice skate and use the gym's treadmill (that counts!). Others went tubing while my partner and I partook of the Jacuzzi. Aahhhh.
We considered how to make it a decathlon. Swimming in the lodge's small pool. The sport of buffet-line eating. Shoveling out the car. (Eventually.)
But in the end, a 10-year-old there with his family -- and a big shovel -- offered to dig us out for $5. Game on! He was happy. We were happy. (I added a little extra for his entrepreneurial spirit.)
We fell short of the pentathlon...gratefully.
After three days of superb conditions and mountain sports, we stopped at White Grass, cross-country ski center down the road, on the way home. The unbelievably great snow allowed for all the trails to be groomed.
We ended up in the middle of an annual 25K ski race. Boy, did they get lucky with all that snow. There's no telling whether the race will be run or not in any given year. Never a guarantee of snow.
So, the lesson today is -- next time there's word of a blizzard in the Washington, D.C., area, the heck with going to the supermarket for milk and toilet paper.
Head for the hills or, rather, the valley -- where getting a snow dump means party time. And someone else doing the food shopping and cooking.
Photos: Ellen Perlman
1. White Grass cross country ski center. 2. Canaan Valley Resort ski lift. 3. 25K racer participant at White Grass cross country ski center billed, by the owners, as "the most exciting cross country skiing in the East!"