the kindness of strangers

i have spent much of the last week and this weekend skiing. in 5 weeks time, i will attempt a 30k ski race (keep in mind, i have only skied 6 times in my life). i am not sure that this will happen as i still can not  turn well, and freak a bit on downhills. i went out again yesterday and it went a lot better despite the kindness of strangers i met on the trail. there was an older gentleman on the trail that decided i needed some good advice on the proper skiing technique. and while that is true, i wish that he had not decided that the opportune time to give me this advice was at the bottom of a hill. he stopped, turned around, and started to say something. i had to fall on purpose (because i don’t know how to stop) to avoid hitting him, to which he said, if you bend your knees more, you wont fall. laying on the ground with my mouth hanging open, i was not able to say anything before he skied off – such as i may not have fallen had he not stopped at the bottom of the hill. he stopped every few hundred meters after that to give me another pointer or two, but before the next hill, i stopped and let the next 5 or so skiers pass so i did not have to worry about falling again i know that he was trying to be helpful, and it is true that i need all the ski advice i can get, but sometimes the kindness of strangers only makes one have to throw themselves into a snowbank.