My first day at work

My first day at work started way too early having to get up at 6 and be at the first gondola up the mountain at 6:55.  I haven’t been awake this early (I know it’s not that early) for quite a long time, even so I couldn’t sleep well at all I was nervous about making sure I got up at the right time.  Things ended out alright I made the bus at 6:22 and put on all my gear in the locker room once I arrived ready to go ten minutes early.  The early gondola was incredible, rising up over a snowbound mountain while the sun rose casting colors across scattered clouds.  One of the main consolations to having to get up early is first run of the day even before ski patrol, freshly groomed hillsides make for a high speed wonderland of fun.  So far as daily duties there are a bunch of tests that are run on the equipment to insure proper working order.  Today the problems with the lift could have been prevented, a seat cover designed to keep out snow and ice from the machine room got caught in the acceleration side and caused a collision of two chairs.  All that business delayed the opening of the lift making the locals annoyed.  Once things got going there was not really a hitch other than people crashing on the load ramp. The big to-do was right after my shift up on the drive terminal watching people skitter off the unload ramp.  I had just gotten down to the return terminal and the lift slowed to assist a fallen person and it would not accelerate past 3 meters per second.  This caused us to close the lift early and make people walk up the hill to the next closest lift.  After reopening the lift with 45 min left in the day people were racing through the lines to get those last precious runs in.  Things got really interesting, there was a family of four that had been through my lift a few times before with two young ones that mom and dad would help them onto the lift.  So, this time dad had accidentally stepped on the back of the little girl’s skis and caused her to falter and lag behind.  When the chair came she was not ready and tried to duck under the chair, but dad held fast and dragged her across the pit and they actually made it to the first tower before I could get the lift stopped.  She was hanging there dangling from dad’s grip, I ran to try to catch her, falling in the deep unpacked snow, her father finally dropped her and thank God, landed on her skis unharmed just a little shaken up.  I got her skis off and held her hand back to the next chair and sent her up with a group of guys that were going to watch over her until she was joined back with her family up top.  My first day was not an uneventful one as well as you can see.

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