To the SLUSKI Parents…As a parent, one always wonders what happens at ski camp. Your child is missing from the Thanksgiving Day table…and you are thinking…. is there enough food to eat, is she sleeping enough…has he been run over by a moose… or at a minimum…what do they do all week up there??? You want information, but they are in college, notes don’t get sent home from the teachers or the coaches, and the nearly-adult child does not like to talk.
While there is a little bit of “what happens in Canada stays in Canada…” as a fellow parent who is spending a week up here cooking….this is what I can say…
The team is staying in one house in a lovely ski valley called Stoneham; the coaches are in a house next door. The house is about 40 minutes NW of Quebec City at a downhill resort area and there are views of the mountains and slopes from the windows. The team ski house has a big upstairs and downstairs with bedrooms, and a main floor with a large living room/dining room and pretty big kitchen,
Upon arrival there is the ritualistic shaving/trimming of heads (mostly men...see Isaac on the left the photo) . Typical day involves getting up in time for a 7:00 Run… then a nice hearty breakfast of oatmeal made by Adam Terko, his specialty. Team usually leaves here by 8:30 every morning to travel up to Foret Montmorency, a 40 minute drive up into a national park. This park is so beautiful, especially when there is enough snow to ski the 25K or so of groomed trails . It is mostly a spruce forest, very boreal. Sunday was very crowded, with many Quebec ski clubs, along with the college teams from Bates, Middlebury, St. Michaels, UVM, and others. If the team does a double session, they have down time in between and sleep on the floor in the buildings up at Foret, and get back here by 3 or 4 PM. On horribly rainy days, like today, they ski one session, and then are back for a late lunch with a strength training session inside.
We try to have a nice warm soup for them upon arrival. They then have some down time for studying, computer, a quick run before dinner. Dinner is at 6ish, a team meeting, and then quiet hours at 10:00. There are a number of people that play board games, a lot of computer work.. You know that the hard training is catching up to them when they get quieter and sleepier and the hijinks are fewer between workouts. The Coaches house, where we are staying, is a quiet refuge
In September of this year, the coaches asked if I wanted to be team cook (along with my husband Chris). Of course I said yes!!! An exciting challenge to see if I could cook healthy bountiful meals (with a few yummy snacks) for 20 people for a week, including two gluten free and one anti-onion/tomato people …… on a budget. Consider that each skier is expending 5,000 calories a day…x 17 skiers plus four adults… that is upward of 100,000 calories a day to cook. I brought nearly all my kitchen equipment… the car was so full. I think this is like eating an elephant, one meal at a time, with lots of planning. But so far so good, I think.
We have had ham and scalloped potatoes (thanks Debbie Mulcahy), carrot ginger soup (perfected by G-Town), pork tenderloin, roasted potatoes, green beans, salad, brownies and ice cream… Tonight is munch-a-bunch of healthy bowl…with birthday cake for my son. And I will promise a homemade Thanksgiving Day dinner with all of the fixings…and the team will say what they are thankful for before they consume massive quantities of calories.
One of the things I know they will all mention is you…their parents…who they secretly miss very much on that special day. I will hug each and every one of them on your behalf.
The team enjoying a hearty meal from our great chef! Of special note is Blaine (3rd from left) with his awesome mowhawk, and Isaac (4th from left)...you cannot tell in this picture but that is a SLU shield shaved into the top of his head...