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S: Switzerland, 2010

FC: Switzerland | February, 2010

1: "Destiny is not a matter of chance but choice. Not something to wish for but to attain." William Jennings Bryan

2: Feb. 4 - The Departure

3: Feb. 5 - The Arrival

4: Feb.6 - 11 Orientation week in Les Collons

5: (Left) During orientation, six of us were packed into this tiny room. I took this photo from my bed. Our room was at the top of 4 flights of narrow stairs. There were two sets of bunk beds and two single beds. We got to know each other very quickly! | (Left) The bathroom we shared. (Above) I took this photo from the door. You can see my bed in the back corner. The little window, with the amazing view, made up for the cramped quarters!

6: The Orientation Crew

10: Feb. 12-26 Leysin | After orientation week, we were assigned to lead groups at three different resorts. I was sent to Leysin. It was a neat little ski village in the Alps. We had one day to orient ourselves to the new resort before our first group arrived! Look at the amazing views I was lucky enough to see everyday for two weeks!

15: (Left) The building we lived in was originally used as a Tuberculosis clinic in the early 1900's. Patients from all over the world flocked to Leysin to take advantage of the health benefits of the fresh air and sunshine. In 1930, Leysin's population was 5698 with 3000 of those being TB patients. | (Above) This is the room I shared with Kelly (from Ontario) and Kapri (from New Zealand). The bathroom was tiny, but we got used to it. (Right) The balconies were huge with big double doors so nurses could wheel patients outside in their beds to take in the fresh air and sunshine.

16: Fun off the Slopes!

17: Our job as ski and snowboard counsellors included more than a 6 hour day on the slopes. The day began at 7 am with a wake-up call for all the campers, and ended at 10 pm with lights out. The hours in between were filled with skiing & snowboarding followed by evening activities such as tubing, skating, mini-olympics, trivia, movie nights and more. One night a week, each counsellor got a couple hours off. I usually walked into town to buy souvenirs, eat chocolate, and enjoy some peace and quiet :)

18: Week 1: International Schools from London | The first week, my group came from a boys school and a girls school in London. The kids were from the USA, Mexico, Bulgaria and Turkey. We had a great week together!

19: Kelly celebrated her birthday while we were there. So, after the kids went to bed we played some "Pin Kelly on the Welly" and "Blind-folded Musical Chairs". And of course we had to surprise her with a cake, a card and some Switzerland souvenirs as her gift!

20: Th | Week 2: The Modern English School, Egypt

22: Feb.27 My LAST Night! | It was snowing so hard, that we didn't even have the moon to light our way!

23: My last night coincided with a staff change night. This meant everyone was moved to Anzere, before they were posted to their new resorts. That night also happened to be Anzere's annual "ski in the dark" night. | The evening included a roast beef dinner (and drinks!) at the peak chalet, followed by a late-night ski down in the dark (no resort lights). It was sketchy to say the least. Especially since I had never skied that mtn. before!

24: After making it down the mtn. safely, we all headed back to the chalet bar for a party.

25: The night was bittersweet for me. I had to leave behind a lot of amazing people, and the breathtaking alps. But, I could leave knowing that I had accomplished a long-time goal of mine: to teach snowboarding in Switzerland.

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  • By: Tamara A.
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