The Junior Ski trip departed for Serre Chevalier on New Year’s Eve – with a lovely 05:00 meet at the airport. There was a slight delay once on the plane, due to the fog in Geneva, however, upon our arrival we were rewarded with a fabulous New Year’s Eve fireworks display.
The Hotel Frejus could not have been better situated – we walked out of the front door straight on to the gondola, which took us up to the top of the mountain and guaranteed snow. Like all resorts snow had been poor – but fortunately all slopes were open, even if some towards the bottom did use snow cannons to guarantee this.
Our instructors for the week, Lionel and Stephane, were fantastic – they were incredibly kind, funny and, perhaps most importantly, patient! Both groups were very well looked after and experienced as many of the runs as possible, even if the wind did make great efforts to stop us! On a couple of occasions the wind picked up to such an extent that all the lifts were closed and some rather interesting runs down to the bottom of the mountain had to be made! On one rather hair raising day the gondola broke as some were coming down, Miss Hamilton has only just recovered from her time swinging over the valley!
After a busy day’s skiing we would have a quick snack before either swimming, visiting the village, watching a movie or another activity. Then after supper would be our evening activities. These were great fun – we particularly enjoyed bum-boarding (although some of us felt like we had been in World War 3 by the time we finished the session!) and ice-skating. Jamie T-C almost made it impossible for Mrs Tanner to stay on her feet; she was laughing so hard at his efforts to stay upright! If you look on the DPS Facebook page you will see our efforts to complete the mannequin challenge whilst skating!!!
Food was another huge success – the hotel provided a fabulous continental breakfast each morning and a lovely cooked meal at lunch time, this was always accompanied by delicious salads and freshly baked bread. In the evening we were truly spoilt with dishes ranging from beef bourguignon to chicken with thyme and lemon – and as for the desserts, well who doesn’t like profiteroles or homemade apple tart? Despite enjoying the hotel food we did sneak out for the occasional crepe – Miss Hamilton and I were particularly impressed with the boys’ choices that included smoked trout, cheeses and duck; whereas the girls were slightly more predictable with chocolate and vanilla ice-cream – all devoured in seconds! Hot chocolates were another favourite of the week; we may have had quite a few of these!
All of the children threw themselves into all the skiing and activities with gusto and made incredible progress – although the awards at the end of the week focused more on the best wipe outs and falls off of drag-lifts – no names mentioned, Eleanor Beckley or Jake Jones!
On many occasions throughout the week Miss Hamilton and myself were absolutely delighted to hear from the ski staff, hotel staff and other adults we met, how incredibly polite the children were. Well done everybody and thank you for making it such a fantastic week. Miss Hamilton, thank you very much for giving up a week of your holiday and coming with us, making the trip possible. Mrs Tanner