The bus ride from Milan goes to Courmeyeur, Monte Blanco (Mont Blanc in French) once a day in the afternoon, and return the next morning. It stops at a few places and can get quite full. I was travelling in the slow season. In the busy season, you get to pre-designate your seat to the front of the bus for 1 Euro more.
My hotel was just right behind the bus stop and the visitor center in Courmeyeur. I figured out all the bus routes to and from the mountain, and to the next town over for next night's stay before I checked in at the hotel. People at the visitors centre speaks a bit more English than those in Milan, and some French. So it was easy.
I walked into the boutique hotel thinking it is done up like it would be in Tremblant in Quebec. But they are all small boutiques built to the shape of the mountain and the town. It was unique in its own charm. I was greeted by a nice older gentleman. He showed me around the cafe and breakfast area, and to my room. The key was very retro, with the keyhole. But a side connects to the electrical in the room, to allow for electricity. The great thing is that, hotel is almost half the price during the weekday, as opposed to the weekend. It was a good Thursday.
I took my time for the evening, and explore the town a little bit before going to the mountain for the morning after. Wine and meat seems like a good option here.
The night was still young after I checked out a food joint and a bar. There was many English tourists. I guess they have more direct flight going here to Milan or Mont Blanc.
The hotel provides full breakfast with a great selection of omelette, egg and cheese, cold cuts, more eggs, cereals and all kinds of juice, tea and coffee. The breakfast room was small and charming.
I started my snowboarding around 8am. I didn't research any details on boarding or buy anything online prior. Luckily, between the tourist office, the hotel keeper, and fellow snowboarder, I was able to make out what I need to do for getting the pass and equipment. The hotel sent us to the lift area with their own van. I was able to get my rental gears, and there is only one entrance to the hills. I was excited to finally go up!
The lifts are similar to the ones in blue mountain. Naturally, there were more difficult runs. My personal challenge for to try a black run there. There must have been some blue and blacks. I lost myself a few times, getting to the midhill with no way to go any further down. The view was beautiful.
It fogged up near noon. Naturally, I was lost again while I thought I was heading to the bottom. So I went down my last run in very hard to see conditions. At some point, I was following a group of small children after their instructor, and I thought I was faster than them, so I headed left and went off on my own. Within minutes, I was seeing all white in front of me, to the left of me, to the right and behind me. Where on earth are the people, and the trees? I couldn't possibly just went blind!!!
I thought my glasses (transitions) fogged up, so I took them off, I still see nothing! I know that I didn't have snow-blindness, as my eyes are not burning.
I was also stuck, as I got to a patch of very rough area, it's rocky, I can't move fast. So I freak out. I never really asked for help. It's been like that for the whole life as the eldest child. My teacher friend had shared with me early that she was told to learn to ask for help when she was being trained as a teacher. It doesn't work like that when you are suppose to be the doctor and the last resort at work. But hey, you have to face your fear ultimately.
So I cried out for help! Loud and clear. Nobody came, not even those instructors. They might have went on quite far already. Those kids actually could be quite fast if they weren't doing figure Z.
I pushed on, I had too. Not long, I heard noises. I still can't see. But the noises helped. I got down to the bottom. And there was food! It's great for squeeze out that last bit of stress, if I didn't get enough drinking in me the night before. It also feels great to conquer your fears!
The bath was good! The italians know how to enjoy themselves. It was hard to have conversations with the locals. They were similar to Torontonians. They didn't start talking to me until I accidentally dropped my phone in the water. (My phone survived it). I thoroughly soaked myself before heading back to Milan the next day.