The name's Terry, Terry of the mountains

Share
Related Topics

I'm in the French Alps, skiing in a small British village called Val d'Isère. I suppose that technically it's French but you wouldn't know it. The place is packed with Ruperts and Tobys teaching their broods to ski so that they might better be able to network once they get their first job in banking. French is spoken here, but only if absolutely necessary and is definitely frowned upon.

Stacey and I decided that our kids should learn to snowboard, as opposed to skiing, like us. This decision was mainly based around the different types of boots. Snowboarders have boots that are as comfortable as Uggs, whereas we skiers still have to squeeze our feet into medieval torture machines. I do find it astonishing that we can put a man on the moon but still can't invent comfortable ski boots. Perhaps designers can hold off on the unnecessary, but inevitable, iPhone 6 and concentrate on an iBoot?

Regular readers will know that I was very early on the "onesie" fashion curve, and I have taken this to the slopes by sporting a very snazzy one-piece ski suit. For some reason that I have yet to fathom, the suit has a Velcro patch on the front with the word "Terry" on it. This is not the maker's name, but it does mean that, to the amusement of my family, my "mountain" name is now Terry.

Last week, I slipped away from the pack and was skiing on my own when I witnessed a woman do a spectacular wipeout. She lost both skis and went head over heels down the mountain, unable to stop herself for about 200 yards. She was screaming in agony when she finally came to rest and, as I was quite near her, I skied over and did what I could. She had hurt her back, and so I tried to make sure that she didn't move as I waved down a passing ski instructor and asked him to radio for assistance.

The injured woman was English and spoke no French so she used me for translation purposes. After a while she kept thanking me and calling me "Terry". I didn't think that this was the time to explain that this was not my name so I rolled with it. I had a balaclava on, and was loath to take this off lest she happen to recognise me and become ever further confused, and start to worry that she might be in some complicated hidden camera scenario.

I stayed with her for about 20 minutes, until help arrived, and she was taken down the mountain on a stretcher. Her last words were, "Thank you, Terry. I'm so grateful."

That evening, at supper, everyone was discussing the incident and joking that the woman might be an über-rich heiress (not uncommon out here) who would now be looking to thank her ski-slope assistant with a small gift of a super yacht or a place in Mustique.

They suggested that I should scan the pages of the local paper to see if someone was "looking for Terry". I imagined trying to explain that I was indeed "Terry" although not … it was too complicated, and I fear that Mustique shall never be mine. If she is reading this, however, a comfy pair of ski boots would be nice.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Reeyot Alemu (L) and Eskinder Nega (R)  

Voices in Danger: Ethiopian journalists are fleeing from prosecution while others languish in prison

Anne Mortensen
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?