In episode 11, the girls get to do one of the best adrenaline rushes you can still get when paralyzed – downhill skiing. They head to Big Bear, Cali for the classic weekend ski getaway.
Tiphany and Chelsie have fun rating hot men during the road trip there, Chelsie can’t calm her nerves before she skis and Angela has so much fun she can’t stop smiling. Also, watch Mia prove paraplegics can conquer the top bunk!
SPOILERS AHEAD ***
The episode begins with a flurry of activity at Angela’s house – all four girls are there, plus Chelsie, to pack for their trip to Big Bear (Auti’s idea. She’s the only one in the group who has gone adapted skiing before).
Both Chelsie and Tiphany have gone skiing before their injuries, but Chelsea is definitely the most scared to go. She tried snowboarding her first time a month before her injury, and talks about how she’s afraid it won’t be the same.
Angela thinks it’ll be scary. “Come on a quadriplegic skiing?” Mia says this is the first time she’s ever gone skiing, and I think she kind of likes it that way. We get a cute shot of Angela and her 25 year old boyfriend (she’s 37), and calls herself a “cougar kitty.”
Their relationship is definitely getting stronger. Cody says learning to be with Angela has been an amazing growth process. “I had to battle immaturity to be her boyfriend,” he says.
Angela is super excited to bring her boyfriend along. She’s leaving Auntie Judy at home. It’s great to see her finding herself without that woman. They all pack into Angela’s van, and an interesting thing happens that I can totally relate to: Cody is the only able-bodied person going along with all four girls (“Think you can handle my girls,” ask Angela). Auti feels bad about him doing all the work as he packs the van. “This is when it really sucks to be paralyzed. I wanna go out there and help him.”
Angela talks about how she feels like she limits her boyfriend sometimes, but is glad they’re going skiing because it’s something they can do together. During the road trip to Big Bear, Chelsie and Tiphany ride together. During the drive, they’re pretty adorable.
As their munching on carrots, they dance in their seats and rate the hottest of guys as they drive by. Chelsie opens up, “I have found that since my accident that guys I found attractive before are like douche bags now.” Tiphany concurs. She needs to change the type, obviously. We usually have to do this after our injuries.
I also love the scene of Angela cruising along in the front seat of the minivan. “It felt great just being a normal girlfriend sitting in the front seat with her boyfriend.” That finally arrive, and realize their cabin isn’t very accessible.
Some of the girls expressed doubts that Cody might be too young for Angela, especially Auti, but they’re impressed with how he’s doing so far, especially as they unpack to help Angela. “He might be a keeper after all,,” says Mia.
When they’re picking beds, Mia picks the top bunk. Watching her climb up to the top just to prove to herself she could do it was incredibly awesome. I love this girl! She is always trying so many seemingly not-possible/safe things, like bumping down the front steps of her ex boyfriend’s apartment like it’s going over the pebble. Don’t try this at home kids.
The girls decide to go out to a bar and chat up the locals. Tiphany gives her advice for flirting with men. “Always go in with your head held high. And kind of like give the subtle eye contact with a glance, with a slight smile and look away. It will drive him crazy. Then they’re captivated.” The girls have fun chatting up the men, and Chelsie talks about how she’s learning how to flirt with men post-injury by observing the girls work the room.
“It was really great to see them approach guys that are walking, because I’m kind of still learning that.” “The sexiest thing in the world is confidence,” says Mia. The next morning over waffles, Chelsie admits that she gets a call from one of the guys with a giggle.
After the crew gears up in their snow outfits, Cody talks about how the world has no idea how hard these girls have it in their everyday lives, especially Angela. “Dating Angela made me a man,” he says. Once they arrive, Chelsie shares her fears, again, about how she’s scared.
They have fun observing the cold weather (Mia has never been in cold weather since her injury, so it’s weird for her to feel the coldness on her legs). Then they head to the adaptive area and get geared up. Angela learns she can use little training wheels on her ski so he doesn’t have to worry about falling over, and is very relieved.
They play over-dramatic music as Mia tries to transfer into the mono-ski (annoying), but it’s fun to watch the girls get on the slopes. Angela is the first one up the hill, and after a little bit of hesitation she sees right away how fun it is. She was an adrenaline junkie before her injury so this is right up her ally. “I have never in my life before ever thought about going skiing.” She’s thrilled to learn that all she has to do to turn her head a little bit to turn the ski. “It’s one of the best thrills I’ve had since being paralyzed,” she says, and the girls cheer her down the hill.
Then Chelsie is next, and after a little freak out session about the lift, she gets to the top. “I guess there’s only one way down,” she says. They put a cool camera on her ski we can watch her reaction as she catches speed the first time, and it is priceless. Auti & Chelsie have fun racing each other down the hill later, after Chels gets better. “It felt like you were flying,” says Auti. “You felt free.” As someone who has gone adapted skiing before. I can say for a fact that they’re SO right. Sit skiing is not boring, world. Really!
The episode ends with Chelsie beaming – happy ski vibes forever. Great, positive episode, but sadly, no drunken hot tub fun (pout).
Are you paralyzed and interested in going skiing? Check out this site for a list of adaptive ski programs in the US
What did you think of this episode? Can you relate to Auti when you can’t help out? Have you gone skiing before and was it as great?