After we had one awesome Snowboard class with Joey from Hakuba Snow Sports School, we decided to have two more classes with him at 8am each morning, to learn more about the sport. Snowboarding feels so good, although my knees (and butt) say otherwise.

On our way to Hakuba Goryu, where our second lesson was held, we saw snow monkeys having fun in the snow. Snow monkeys are the only monkeys that knows how to  enjoy hot spring, they’re puffy fur balls with a semi-human face capable of making the most genuine expression: e.g. the “Hell-Yea!” expression when they got themselves another hot spring. They kind of remind me of the squirrels we had in Berkeley, both are rather cute and harmless from distance, but sly and “aggressive” when their “rights” of foods or hot spring are threatened. The squirrels literally robbed two packages of nuts from me during Final Week, how pathetic is that! I’ve also heard stories of snow monkeys neglecting human beings who have already occupied the hot spring; the monkeys simply walked straight ahead, stepped into the hot spring and acted as if they are among their own spices. I guess when human beings are around all the time, the animals simply get used to us as well.

The snow in the morning was pure and pristine. The hills just woke up and snow chasers from all around the world had not occupied the hills. We rented our gear and did several warm up rounds. One of the warm up games was to stand right across each other, drop our snowboards and catch the other person’s snowboard before it fell onto the ground. Surprisingly, this game really does the job. Before long, I was sitting on the Lift and nervous about getting off the lift on my snowboard.

Joey told us that normally when snowboarders got off the lift one of their feet were strapped in. I wasn’t confident enough to strap one of my feet in and just slide down the lift. I remembered falling at least 10-15 times before getting a slight hint about how to not embarrass myself in front of the lift officers. Eventually I could land with one foot strapped in, but I still didn’t get how to stop gracefully like Joey did after I slide for a while on the snow.

The same thing goes to my turns. By the end of our lessons, I could slide down and traverse on the hills both on heels and on toes. (which was more than surprising and satisfying to me. I could just slide down the hills like this all day long!) However, I couldn’t make the smooth turns like Joey did, especially on the heel-toe transition. I have to say, on the hills I saw many cool moves on the hills and a small part of me secretly think that I will be able to do them in like, 10, 20 years lol.

I GOT MYSELF A NEW BOARD!!! woohoo

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(cat meme pc google lol)

My board is an 141 cm in length, camber bottom, pink-and-purple-mountainish pattern top, Burton board. Now, before I bought the board, I actually looked up online and saw that there were one Burton store on 4th street at Berkeley. I thought about getting the board after I got back to Berkeley, but then I also thought about the probability of visiting Beijing during my Winter break. Beijing has several nice snow parks and I’d be more than happy to try them out.

After I got my board, I finally decided that I really really needed to get my drivers’ license. Now, just between me and the other two readers of this blog (lol my “gang”) I also found Berkeley’s snowboarding club. Although, they seemed to party more than snowboarding. I will need to check them out next semester to see if really they are just party all night long under the disguise of a snow club.

During our stay at Hakuba, this tiny guy brought us ultimate joy:

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(all pc to Google we forgot to take pics of him)

His name is Victorie Cheval Blanc MURAO III.

I can’t even pronounce the name correctly. It makes him some sort of a white horse prince, while actually it’s just some weird horse dude with a pair of fake wings on his back. Also, what’s wrong with the bang??? Are those cream or hair?

Aside from the name, Lulu said that it looked like Hakuba’s city mayor.

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I think so too.

We watched the Shining and I was so scared. However, I first realized that elements like background music, camera angles, lightnings, etc and etc could have such ambiguous yet profound impact on the viewers. We spent a lot of time talking about different theories on the Shining. My personal favorite is the one saying that little Danny was abused by his father Jack. Although I realized that many people probably wouldn’t agree with me, which is fine, because I got into this idea by a youtube video lol. It’s interesting how a two hour horror film can bring up so many discussions.

Fri Dec 23 10:11

I’m back at Shenzhen now. Slept pretty well last night, got waken up by music from the primary school (which was my primary school) nearby. Had tons of breakfast. Now heading to my high school to meet my friends. I guess this blog wrap up my trip in Hakuba. I really enjoyed it and hopefully I will be back next year.

One thought on “Hakuba log 2: Shining and snow monkeys

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