Last updated: January 30. 2014 11:25AM - 782 Views
Beacham McDougald Contributing Columnist

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Thirty plus years ago when the like of our current weather was simply known as “cold” and not the “arctic vortex” Lynn, I, and a few others went to Sugar Mountain on a skiing vacation.

The evening we arrived the temperature was 13 degrees below zero and a very stiff wind was blowing out of the northwest. Where we were staying was subject to “brown outs” or rotating blackouts as the electric capacity needed at that time exceeded the availability of the electric company to provide. Fortunately, we had a roaring fire in the wood stove to keep us warm.

The next day the ski slopes were nearly deserted due to the extreme cold. It was a skiers dream. There were no lines and no skiers to dodge.

The worst part: it warmed only up to six degrees below zero and the stiff wind was still coming down the mountain. I was prepared with ample clothes and some serious layering.

The ski lift was the booger. Sitting still for what seemed like eternity as it slowly lifted you upward and straight into the howling winds and snow.

Suddenly, I felt a sharp pain on my wrist. It was similar to someone taking a hot soldering iron and touching me with it. Nope, it wasn’t a soldering iron, but a little crack had formed between my outer coat and my mittens, exposing a small amount of skin to the cold. It was quickly corrected.

Skiing all day at will is a skier’s dream, and that we did.

Arriving back in our quarters near the slopes, the full effects of the day hit me like a Mack truck. There was not a muscle or joint that did not ache beyond belief.

Ah, the price of fun and to be 30 years old again.

Beacham McDougald is president of McDougald Funeral Home and Crematorium in Laurinburg. He serves as vice chair of the Scotland County Highland Games, on the Scotland County Tourism Development Authority, and is the founder and liaison of the Scotland High School-Oban High School student exchange program.

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