Thursday, 27 March 2014

Life of a seasonairre | Whistler

I have been living in Whistler on a Ski Season for the past 6 months and it has been a pretty amazing experience.

I was thrown into the seasonairre lifestyle within the first 4 days of arriving in Canada. I boarded a plane from America to Vancouver on the 4th September and arrived in Whistler two days later. My initial introduction to the ski resort was a somewhat quiet and chilled experience. I arrived at my hostel in Function Junction at 9:00pm to find my roommates were all tucked up in bed already - not what I was expecting! My roommates consisted of a hiker in her late 20's and two middle aged women, one I found out later was visiting her son who was on a ski season. All of whom were not really the kind of people I thought I would be socialising with, but very nice and considerate non-the-less. 

My real introduction was a couple of days later when I applied for a room in the village on a Facebook group. If you are thinking of doing a season in Whistler the Facebook groups are a lifesaver. My new home was staying with 3 other girls, two Canadians and one Australian. When I moved in there was also another girl staying for a couple of weeks on the sofa, a friend of one of the girls from home. The girl I took over the room from also came in and out, so it was really six of us in the house most of the time. 


Being in a prime location opposite Garfs in the village, it was a party house. My first week I was introduced to more faces than I can remember, and probably wouldn't recognise 80% of them at this point. It was definitely a great way to start my season. Unfortunately three of the girls were leaving to go home, so it was short-lived but they were great hosts while they were here, I was pretty sad to see them go. However I then got two new awesome housemates (again Australian!) who are now very good friends of mine, and have got me through the season when things get a bit tough.

My first week introduced me to the party scene of Whistler, I was going out almost every night. I had managed to get a job quite quickly, but being dead-season I didn't have many shifts yet, but I had my English money to keep me in the bars. It also introduced me to the drug scene of Whistler. There's definitely a big drugs and party scene here, I've never really been into drugs so it wasn't a big deal for me, but apparently they are a lot cheaper than Australia. Maybe that's why so many Australians come here! 

After a couple of months I had to move out and find a new place, the lease was up and I couldn't afford the winter rates in the village home. I had met a guy from England, when I say met, my meeting was him being thrown out of our flat after one of the girls had brought him home after a night out. He had a place going in his flat in Alta Vista, and not having found much on Craigslist I took it. Moving into a house where everyone knew each other was quite daunting, but they were all pretty awesome. Again our first few weeks were spent having house parties and drinking, most of us were still on few shifts, if we even had jobs, so we were all about and had savings to spend. The new house had ten of us all together. 

The property was pretty ramshackle, but had the feeling of a proper ski-bum home. The residents came from all over England, Scotland, Sweden, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, so quite a mix. You would think ten people would get on top of each other, but actually once we all started snowboarding and working as much as we could, the house was pretty empty. The house consisted of a couple that lived in a downstairs self contained part, me and another girl and six boys. As it usually happens when you live in a close proximity to the opposite sex, inevitably both us girls ended up hooking up with two of the boys in the house. 

I have now been dating a Canadian boy for the past 3 months. It got off to a pretty bumpy start, I didn't really want a boyfriend initially, especially one I would eventually have to leave behind - travelling and boyfriends don't really mix, unless you're doing it together and even then I'm still a bit sceptical. But it has actually been pretty nice having a boyfriend while away. I don't really get home-sick but I miss my family and friends from time to time, and having someone close to you definitely fills that gap. I leave in 2 months and he leaves in a month, so I have no idea what will happen, lets not think about that yet.

Once we all started working and finally after months of rubbish snow, got some powder, most of us stopped going out so much. Also once the savings dried up, living in Whistler is ridiculously expensive, so going out became a less frequent thing. If you don't have money, there isn't a lot to do in Whistler apart from snowboard. And no one has any money! And everyone skis or snowboards. 

My job didn't pay me very much, as most don't, so I have been living pay check to pay check, trying to make rent each month. So my life has been pretty chilled out over the last few months, it's like real life but way more chilled out, and just all round better. I have swapped my 9-5 job in an office, to come out and live with awesome people, in a beautiful country, where I have the option to snowboard every day, and at least for a couple of days after pay day, have some drinks. I wouldn't change it for the world, and I'm not ready for my next adventure just yet, so I have decided to do another season. 

I am spending my summer again at camp, this time as their social media coordinator, and then back to Whistler at the end of the summer. I plan to head to Australia after my season, so I will be on a one girl mission to save some money over next winter. Wish me luck!