Yesterday was a sad day for SMS T2. Our World Cup contingent hopped the big pond, and are right now settling into their 5 month suitcase life beginning in Munio, Finland. Goodbyes are never fun, but the moment is always bittersweet. The bitter side is obvious: I don’t get any Sophie, Simi, Jessie, or Andy time for who knows how long. On the sweet end of the spectrum, saying goodbye means I have incredibly talented friends who are about to start another year of adventuring in Europe, kicking bootay in races, and sending really awesomely weird snapchats.
That said, there are many different ways to say goodbye, all with their different benefits and downsides.
First we have the classic hug. Sophie and I have been masters at “the hug” since our days racing together at Dartmouth. The plusses of the hug include physical contact, sharing warmth, and the occasional claw mark indicating ferocity in love while also leaving a lasting impression. The largest downside of the hug is probably the risk of shirt sleeves being used as tear/snot rags.
Next we have the “Cyber Hug.” When time is short and you don’t have time for a long drawn out real hug, this is the next best option. The obvious plus is you skip any sappy, Notebook-esque moments while still leaving a lasting message for everyone to hang on to. The downside is no actual physical contact. But in a pinch, I’d say the cyber hug is almost as good as the real thing (…maybe).
Then we have the photo. Like the text/cyber hug, having a picture is a good way to capture the moment and keep a permanent memory somewhere in the “Cloud.” So the upside of a picture is clear- not only are there words to go with the goodbye, but an actual picture encapsulating the raw emotion felt by both parties. The downside is the obsessiveness with which one might look at a picture of their loved one, and also looking like a crying mess forever on camera. But Erikandy is a beautiful looking couple, so even when they’re sad they look spectacular.
The final way to say goodbye is to bake your feelings. I think this is how (aside from a hug) I said goodbye to Jessie. Our token baker for the past 5 months, I’ll really miss her cheery smile as she is kneading away at some amazing bread. She went off in the van, and I immediately went into baking mode (also it was Annie P.’s birthday, so it really worked out perfectly). The plus: baked goods. The minus: everyone is gone so there is no one there to eat all of the baked goods (this could actually also be a positive…so there might not be a downside to this).
Some other things we are saying goodbye to this week…
1. Hopefully the snow/rain/freezing rain/ice mix that is currently falling from the sky.
2. Roller Skiing
3. Bounding (although, my attitude towards bounding has really taken a turn for the positive as of late. We had some hard bounding intervals, and after accepting that bounding always hurts, I felt like I was really able to push the boundaries of my bounding abilities!)
Stratton gave us a great send off (another way to say goodbye…throw a party!) on Saturday. We had over 100 people gather in the new art building at SMS to celebrate the team and the community that supports us. We can’t thank everyone enough, but we’re going to try by racing as hard as we can and hopefully coming back in March with some hardware. Thanks for a great summer and fall, and the next update will be from snowy West Yellowstone!