Sunday 11 February 2024

2024 Weeknote 6

The last week of term hurtled past with all the grace of a juggernaut with boy-racer twin exhaust pipes and a rave going on in the cockpit. By mid-week I was drafting my letter of resignation, no longer able to remember any of the reasons why I wanted to do the job at the same time as undertaking a Masters. But I managed to remind myself that we shouldn't make any hasty decisions during the last week of term and things did pick up a bit towards the end of the week. 

I went to see Wicked with my friend E on Wednesday night. I last saw it in London with Mother Hand a good number of years ago, so it was great to get a refresher. I love the soundtrack and the cast were marvellous. I've got a couple of other musicals booked in for later in the year, something to look forward to. 

I continue with the same books and TV as last week because there hasn't been a great deal of time for either. I have, however, kept up with my goal of knitting a hexagon every day and, though I fell behind with the midweek theatre trip happening, I caught up and even got a little ahead of myself, starting hexagon number 11 of the month yesterday. I am not sure what will happen if I miss several days in a row, because catching up will be daunting, but I will keep my efforts going as long as I can. I have 19 hexagons left to knit. This month marked its 10th birthday as a project. Liking that it might be finished by its 11th birthday. 

I'm off skiing today and, yesterday, something really and truly momentous happened. For the first time in my adult life, I walked into a shop and bought a pair of women's ski trousers, in my size, off the rack. If you've ever had the misfortune to get me started on the topic of size inclusive skiwear, you may be aware that this is the grindiest of all my axes. I currently have two pairs of ski trousers - one is plus-sized men's snowboard trousers - baggy enough that the hip-to-waist ratio isn't unmanageable; the other pair I ordered from Columbia USA to be delivered to Father Hand's house during a visit there, because Columbia USA won't ship their products to Europe and Columbia EU considers XL to be as far as it needs to go to be size inclusive. I once wrote a long and detailed email to a British skiwear company, OOSC, when I sent them back something I'd ordered and they contacted me for feedback; the response was about one line, explaining that they might consider it in the future. Disappointed was not the word, though it wasn't unexpected. 

(I have just been to look at their website and see that they have extended their size range to XXL and they do actually have a Curve range now too. The sizing stops at a UK20, so no good for me, but this is progress. My dream of owning an all-in-one continues.)

I concluded - fat, European women are not allowed to ski. Fat men - yes. Fat American women - yes. But if you're in Europe, you'd better find another hobby, eating maybe, or staying out of sight where nobody has to see you. Fat women are not welcome here. 

Grindiest of axes.

Anyway, I walked into Mountain Warehouse last night just to browse, they are newly opened nearby and I wanted to see what sort of range they had. And they had women's ski trousers up to a size 24 and in more than one colour. Granted those options were black or white, but even the existence of one pair marks a milestone. I tried on the white pair, convinced they were not going to fit - the last time I ordered plus size online from a British company I was left feeling utterly disheartened because I ordered a size 26 and they didn't fit...I am not, have never been, a 26 in any other type of garment. But they did fit! So I bought them. They were better than half price so even though I am not someone who can wear white, as a spiller, I felt this was a good deal. 

I know this is a long old story for a pair of ski trousers but, seriously, you don't know how amazing it feels to finally be able to go and buy off the rack. One year I accidentally gave my ski trousers away to charity and had to beg a rental pair off the place we use for school - they didn't fit and I spent my ski holiday with the flies and button undone because they were the only option available. I've given up wearing men's jackets, which make me look like an upside-down triangle, and will ski in a cagoule if I can't get a proper jacket. I idly consider investing in my own start-up to make women's skiwear in extended size ranges, until I remember that this is something I know almost nothing about. So, it was an exciting day. 

I took a picture in the fitting room but it is deeply unflattering as I didn't bother to remove my skirt first, so convinced was I that it wouldn't fit. But I reserve the right to come back and add a picture of myself skiing in them.

Happy trails, everyone. 

No comments: