8:02 a.m. Saturday. It's still dark, as usual, on these cold, winter days. Everybody else is still sleeping and enjoying the comforting heat of their beds. I crack open the locked window by my bed, an act some deemed downright idiotic. I strip off my pajamas, throw on my robe, and head for the shower.
Drying off, I think about where I am about to go. I dress piece by layered piece. I can't wait to hit the slopes! I round up my tools: body, boards, boots, and bindings. Everything is in working order and ready for take- off. As I open the front door, I am shocked by the cold and fight my way through the wind to my car. I turn the key and put the heater on full blast. I am almost there.
I step out of my car and survey the parking lot. Not too many cars. That's the way I like it. I take a deep breath and savor the fresh air. Already, I can feel the pressure of deadlines lifted off my chest. I strap my skis on, and prepare not just to tackle a run but other situatio...