tignes sun up

Out of nowhere, end of season is upon us. That bar you called home every night is closing, guest numbers in resort are radically dropping, more and more green across the mountain is appearing and your mum is sounding more excited every time you talk to her.

It’s a weird time. It’s made even weirder by the conflicting emotions and thoughts circling round in your brain….

1. Am I happy about this… or really sad? 

Of course, it will be nice to go home, see the family, catch up with friends, relax a little bit – but I guarantee when the band at apres decide to start playing R.E.M – It’s The End of The World, you will be holding back the tears wishing you could stay forever in this little bubble where car insurance, student loans and general adult responsibilities don’t affect you.

2. Will I keep the weight off?!?!?! 

Being a broke-ass veggie in the alps has meant some days its just been easier to go without dinner ….. and lunch…… and breakfast….. I’m not going to lie it’s had a fantastic effect on my shape, but now I’m thinking when I get home and there is halloumi and cadburys (not together) at my disposal, how will I control myself?

3. What if I don’t see these people again…..

Being in a resort for 5 months and socialising, working and living with the same people forms quite a bond. We are a tight-knit, large, dysfunctional and somewhat incestuous family; How can I possibly go from seeing these people everyday to potentially never again in my life? Every day towards the end of the season is a constant battle of pushing back the thoughts of ‘this is it, this is really the end.’

tignes 17

4. Where did that time actually go though? 

Seriously, am I going absolutely mental or did I just miss the entirety of February and March? I felt like I was just beginning to settle in and get comfortable and now your ripping the bloody rug right from under me?!

5. I hate cleaning even more than I did before

Working for a tour op has given me many opportunities, I’ve lived abroad for five months, I’ve fallen in love, and I’ve also scrubbed a shower tray with a toothbrush, oh and picked out some lovely clumps of hair and dead skin from obscure places with a toothpick. I have put in enough elbow grease to envy Elvis’ hair and it’s safe to say I don’t think my hands will ever be the same. Shut down week, you won’t be missed.

6. What will I actually do when I get home?

Sure, it’s going to be fantastic for five minutes and then the tidal wave of the biggest comedown of my life so far will hit me. If I’m already struggling to hold back the tears now, I am sure as hell going to be taking orders in-between sobs at the restaurant when I get back.

7. Shit… this is really happening

Everything that has been my life for the past 5 months is now over – brutally over just like that, we get on a bus, or we get on a plane, and we just return to normal life as if none of this ever happened. It’s heartbreaking and I was not prepared for this.

like, at all. 

8. But…. I didn’t do enough snowboarding! 

Okay, so I may have gotten a bit lazy towards the end of the season… or middle…. and neglected the sport that brought me out here in the first place. I had countless opportunity to snowboard but now that I no longer have that luxury, I find myself suddenly pining for one last trip out.

end of ski season

9. How the f*&k am I going to make this relationship work…. 

If you did meet someone on your season or, like me, were silly enough to fall head over heels, I guarantee they live the other side of the country to you. Technically, my boyfriend doesn’t even live in the same country…. I’m in North Wales and he is in Bury St Edmunds. Fan-bloody-tastic. If the end of the season isn’t already depressing enough, throw in saying goodbye to the best friend/soulmate and I promise it’s a barrel of laughs.

10. This was the best decision I have ever made

Despite the fact I wanted to quit, despite the fact I’m devastated it’s over – If i could do it all over again 10 times, I would. It has been hilarious, I have learned many important lessons, I’ve found someone who can make me laugh on demand and fell in love with me when I was the most tired and pale (and generally unattractive) I have ever been in my life; and I have met people who have changed me forever. Ultimately, I have grown in more ways than I thought possible in 5 months. Despite me writing this with tears ready to fly from my eye sockets, I am so incredibly happy and grateful.

Just over 5 months ago, I came out here as not only a reward to myself for finishing uni, and to start my mission of seeing the world, but to escape a life full of lies and deceit, with someone who I was prepared to lose everything for. This has taught me an important lesson – we should always put ourselves first in the big decisions we make. If I had made the terrible mistake of staying, god only knows how miserable I’d be now. I came out here 5 months ago an absolute mess, and I’m going home a whole person with a clear mind. Tignes will always have an important place in my heart, and so will those I met out here.

whole crew

Now for the next adventure….