In January I did one thing that I had never done before and had one thing happen to me that has not happened to me before. I think they are important to note because they show a commitment to opening myself up to new experiences and get back some of the parts of myself that I had lost over the past couple of years. After all I always used to consider one of the cool things of being me was how I end up in weird or cool situations. Over the past two year those had dried up. This lack played a role in me leaving Utah.
The new thing that I did in January was enter a snowboard race: The first annual Baldy Banked Slalom. I took three practice runs on the day before the race. Non of my practice runs were great. On the morning of the race I was planning to get out of bed at 6:30am to get ready. I needed up getting going at 8am and barely making it to the mountain for the registration. I took one practice run that made my runs from the day before look of Olympic quality. I missed gates, crashed and flew out of control over one of the turns(turn 3). A returned to the top of course and attended the riders meeting Now it was time to wait. I watched the youth and woman's divisions go. I had been standing at the top of the course for hours watching and getting ever colder.
Finally the men's division I had two runs to make my mark. No wait its course repairs first. At last it was time to go. My first run I had a little crash but made it down with out missing a gate or breaking any bones. So what if my first run wasn't great and my second was similar. At least I challenged myself. So I ended up coming in last. Next Year if I race I have a time to beat. Here's a video of the event if people want to see the course: http://vimeo.com/35516760
The new thing that happened to me was a little bit of a shock. I have been going to church every Sunday since early December. Being raised Lutheran and wanting to continue in that tradition didn't not leave many choices around Sun Valley I can ether go to a Lutheran Church Missouri Synod(LCMS) Church in Hailey which is 12 miles away or travel about 60 miles to Shoshone to go to an Evangelical Lutheran Church in America(ELCA) Church. I was raised, baptized, and confirmed in the ELCA; another concern is that the LCMS is more closed minded then the Lutheran church I know. After research on the web and some thought I went with the church in Hailey.
One thing that I kept in mind was that I believe in certain things that I would leave a church if pressed on. Those being: Gay Rights, Trans Rights, and Womens Rights.
This turned out to be a non-issue as I found a old but welcoming congregation under the tutelage of Pastor Steve. The first day at the start of the service his daughter came running in the chapel screaming. While I am attending in an age gap with no one within tens younger and 25ish years older then me. I feel welcome and have little trouble getting going on Sunday mornings for the 30 minute drive to Hailey. Which is a miracle if you know me. I am sure my new habit of stopping at the wicked spud on the way home helps.
This brings me to this past Sunday when at the end of the service Pastor Steve got up and announced that he was resigning because he felt that he had been undermined and called into question one to many times. This was a minor shock for me. The more harrowing thing was watching the man in the pew in front of me start shaking with tears. After making his announcement Pastor picked up his young daughter and walked out.