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Winter Sports Day 2017

By Megan Rocher

Last week Friday staff and students here at IEGS had the privledge of participating in Winter Sport Day. Students could choose to do any one of the following activities; skiing, skating, climbing or hiking! Keep reading this blog to find out more about the highlights of the day and the the kodak moments as recorded by Students.

Romme Skiing
Blog Contribution By Rebecka Durén 

I have been waking up at 6am since the age of 12 to get up for school, but no morning have I woken up with as much energy as I did when the alarm went off at 04:50 on Friday the 10th of February - Winter Sports Day, meaning a whole day in Romme for me. Although it was an illegal time of day, I was beyond excited to go skiing. My friends and I had prepped with more snacks than we knew we could stomach and as we drove through a snowy, sleeping Stockholm I felt like a little kid again. Of course, the tiredness from getting up at an inhumane hour caught up with everyone later as soon as we got on the bus. The bus ride is, perhaps ironically so since we pay 600kr to sit on a bus in that sense, what many deem their favourite part of Romme. Being crammed into the metal beast with your mates, knowing the fun you have ahead of you but enjoying the company in the moment as well. However, on the ride up, people laugh and joke and mess around for five minutes, before completely passing out in their seats for two hours. For anyone resisting the urge to sleep, it must have been an amusing show. 

After marching down to the skiing rental station in lines of two and waiting in line for the equipment, the hundred or so students of IEGS took to the mountains. Or, the slopes, as some call it. Having not stood on a pair of skis for two years due to a previous knee injury, my feet felt like led and my calves were aching five minutes in. However once up in the sky on the charming sit lift, all of that was soon forgotten. The weather being anything but sunny didn't faze me or my friends, at least not until two rides later when we sniffed the scent from the Waffle House and gave up the spirited skiing for food. It wasn't a tough choice.

We all realised that skiing, trying to control your skis to go right, and then turn left, whilst avoiding the icy patches which you know will send you into a tree if crossed, and at the same time looking out for any small children on a leash speeding in front of you with their parents clinging on for dear life behind them - is, very lonely in itself. There's not much time left for contemplation or discussion when trying to stay on your feet while facing a steep with no end.

I think that's why, at least as third years, we found ourselves spending most of our time drinking hot chocolate with our boots tied up, talking about our previous skiing vacations. This being our last time going with any school and any classmates, it was perhaps more important to preserve the people and the memories, rather than the slopes. In the end, the slopes will be there to send you flying and break your skis any other day.

At the end of the day, we third years crawled our way back onto the bus and with only one smaller injury among us, we placed our tired selves in our seats like cooing birds in their nests. The bus had become our home for the day and so it was almost like sitting down to a family dinner when we all gathered in our different seating groups to retell the tales of what mishaps and successes had been done during the day. I myself don't like to brag, but I didn't fall off the anchor lift, and that's a major victory in itself.

Image Contribution By David Jingxian Tian

Blog Contribution By Simon Hocker 

For the past 3 years, I have spent every one of my summers aboard the tall ship Kalmar Nyckel, sailing in the Atlantic Ocean. While onboard, I have made countless new friends, experienced many new adventures and gained life skills that I will continue to use for the rest of my life. However, the one thing that has stayed with me more than anything from the ship is the climbing. This is why I tried to emulate those feelings by picking rock climbing as my winter sports day activity.

Restlessness filled my bones as the train slowed down. I dismounted my carriage and began sprinting. I opened the door to the Klättercenter and the excitement prickled down my arms like needles to the skin. I had arrived, I was about to set sail. Or so I thought. I changed hastily and entered the room of walls, they attached a harness to me and up I went as fast as I could. The whole time I had been operating under the assumption “I climb all the time, I have all the upper body power necessary”. But I quickly realised that rock climbing is not at all the same as climbing rope, mainly because of one distinct difference in the climbing techniques involved. Whereas climbing the rope on a ship allowed you to have an easy grip, rock climbing does not. Instead, one has to, in a way, pinch the artificial rock handles, meaning that so much more of the strength needed comes from a person’s forearms, strength that I did not have. I was certain that I was nearing the top before my forearms caught fire! At least it certainly felt that way! I looked down to see just how far I had come. About 6 metres. It turned out that I had severely underestimated rock climbing as a physical activity, it was actually pretty hard.

Now here is where you might think that I must have felt embarrassed, right? Well, I was, but luckily, none of my classmates were around to see it. I breathed a sigh of relief and fixed my eyes upon my target, the top of the mountain, a very small mountain admittedly, but it was mine to conquer nonetheless. Determined to achieve victory, I carried on, ignoring my blackened and ash-covered arms, and it was worth it. For a moment, the prospect of emulating my seafaring adventures had disappeared, but the top of that wall rewarded my determination with a revival of my hope. When I reached the top of that wall, I looked down. I am aware that climbing a rocky wall is not the same as climbing a mast on a tallship, there are many differences. I looked down, there was no body of water in sight, there were no ropes to grab, there was no ship, and there was no horizon. But I closed my eyes… and suddenly it was all there. I was on my beloved ship, somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean, commands were being shouted below, and I felt the wind caress my face as I held onto the top of the mast for dear life. I think the reason my tall ship climbing always stayed with me was because we don’t wear safety harnesses on the ship, so when I held on for dear life, I meant it literally! Whenever I am standing there, atop that mast, there is only ever one thought rushing through my head: “I am alive”. I take one last look at that breathtaking horizon, and then I open my eyes. I am lowered down, and now a new thought is rushing through my head: “let’s do that again!”.

Image Contribution By William Howe

Image Contribution By Sara Nordenström

Image Contribution By Mira Wood


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