Bansko, 2008

The day we arrived, we met Marin the cashier, who was in Bansko for two months to work. The rest of the year, he's back in Varna, a seaside town by the Black Sea popular with tourists. Marin said that Varna is the nicest place in Bulgaria.

There's a chance we will visit Varna, but right then, we were in Bansko for the skiing. Most of us were first-timers.

Scrabble, anyone?

Our group of eight spent the nights playing poker in Knights' Lodge, a lovely apartment run by a nice English couple. The husband also works as some sort of celebrity-cabby in the UK, in the sense that he's not famous, but his fares are.

We didn't have poker chips to play with, but some smart aleck had brought along a Scrabble set so we used the Scrabble tiles as chips. I don't play poker much normally but managed somehow to win some money.

Fun in the snow

During the day, we got out on the slopes but whatever I did there, it wasn't skiing. In fact, apart from Daniel, Qianwen and Gabby, who had some experience, the rest of us weren't really on any slope at all. There are no pictures to show as I was too busy to take any, trying to avoid doing splits, steering myself into obstacles and generally crashing everywhere.

Gabby was the only snowboarder among us. We all thought that snowboarding would be harder, but accourding to our temperamental but excellent ski instructor, Buago, "Bad skiers become snowboarders."

He should have told me before I signed up for the course.

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