A long time ago and in a galaxy far away, I had a husband. The "wasband" had a few quirks, as most people do. He enjoyed spending money, while I was more of a saver (for those of you not yet married, beware this scenario. Work this out beforehand). His reasoning when wanting to buy something new when we had a perfectly good version of it was, "But it's old!"
Don't get me wrong. New stuff is fun, and often necessary. A toaster that doesn't have smoke coming out of it. Running shoes. Athleta dresses! Well, maybe Athleta dresses aren't necessary. But I digress. Old stuff often still works, sometimes even better than the new versions. In many cases it was built to last. I can't bring myself to throw it all out.
It's been a snowy winter, a shovel-every-day, roof collapsing, roads closing winter. One morning I eyed the foot of new snow and thought about my cross country skis. They languished in a shed, hardly every used these days, partly because there's so many other things I like to do, and partly because of a long-ago ankle-breaking incident in West Yellowstone while they were strapped to my feet.
These skis are from the early '90s. They're skinny, without metal edges. They came as a package with poles and boots, probably costing around $100. If I was going to start skiing again on a regular basis, maybe it was time to buy newer gear.
I stepped into the bindings. My street is one of the last to be plowed, so I could ski from there to the woods a quarter mile away. As I entered the forest, instead of fumbling and falling, the stride seemed familiar. My muscles remembered how to do this.
I don't need new skis. Maybe if I decide to tackle steeper backcountry terrain, I'll look into it. But while I was skiing on my old skis, a lot of memories came back. Living in Grand Teton National Park and "crust cruising" beneath the mountains. Skiing on frozen rivers in Alaska. I'd once spent a lot of time on these skis. Even though they were old, they could still take me places. It wasn't time to give up on them yet.