Sindy took her biggest ever breath of the fresh mountain air and beamed. “This place is really cool!”
Holly and Jasmine agreed. The mountains around the Crystal Peaks Ski Resort sparkled with snow. Old-fashioned chalets lined the village streets under a sky that was the brightest shade of blue. Unbelievably beautiful!
It was Sindy’s first skiing holiday with her friends. She couldn’t wait to get back on her skis but was feeling a bit nervous. What if she couldn’t remember how to do it?
“Don’t worry,” said Holly. “It’ll all come back to you.”
But it was getting late and their first run would have to wait until tomorrow. The pals headed to their chalet to chill after their long journey.
“I’ll make hot chocolate,” said Holly, “while you guys unpack. And Sindy, try not to take all night…”
Sindy carefully sorted all her outfits and hung them neatly in her wardrobe.
“Come on, choccy’s getting cold!” shouted Holly.
“It always pays to be prepared,” said Sindy, holding up a bag of fluffy white marshmallows.
The friends snuggled up under their duvets with steaming mugs of chocolate. Sindy dropped a handful of marshmallows into each girl’s cup. They looked like the soft snowflakes falling outside the window. Sindy and her friends watched as the marshmallows started to melt gently in the warm sweet chocolate.
“Let’s tell scary stories,” said Sindy.
“Ooh, yes!” said Holly. “I know, have you heard about the snow monster that lives in these mountains?”
“You mean, like a yeti?” said Jasmine. “That’s just a fairy tale…isn’t it?”
“That’s what the people in this village thought,” said Holly. “Until they found the yeti’s enormous footprints and somehow skiers mysteriously started to disappear…”
“Oh, really,” said Sindy, laughing. “And what does this scary monster look like?”
“Well, it’s said to be as tall as two men,” said Holly, “covered in white fur, with an enormous head, great bulging eyes and huge paws. And don’t forget the fangs—pointy and sharp—perfect for munching on skiers who wander off piste!” Sindy giggled. “I’d better stick with you then, Holly!”
The following day, Sindy and her pals got up early and headed for the slopes.
“Wooahhh!” said Sindy, as she put on her skis and tried to slide down a small practice slope. Unfortunately, she quickly came crashing down on to the snow. “I’m not sure I can do this any more.”
“Of course you can!” said Holly before whizzing down the mountainside past her, expertly negotiating the bumps and dips before coming to a perfect halt at the bottom. Jasmine followed, sliding down without too much trouble. Sindy got up and tried again. She fell over once more and was finding it hard to get her balance on the unfamiliar skis. Looking towards her friends, she felt secretly scared. What if I fall over when I’m going down that steep slope? she thought. I’ll look silly and it will hurt.
Holly and Jasmine took a ski lift back up the hill. Sindy was starting to get the hang of balancing by the time they reached her and was a bit steadier on her skis. She was beginning to remember that skiing could be fun, but she was still frightened of tackling a big slope.
“Come on, let’s all go down together,” said Holly encouragingly.
“I, er, um…” said Sindy.
Just then Jasmine’s smile disappeared. “What’s up, Jas?” asked Holly.
Jasmine, whose face had now turned white as a ghost, pointed to something over the brow of the hill. “What is it?” said Sindy.
“Th-th-the y-y-yeti…” stammered Jasmine. The others looked round to see the shadow of a gigantic creature. Its enormous arms were outstretched. Its eyes protruded wildly from its large head. Its paws were the size of tea trays. And it was heading their way!
“Aaaggghhh!” screamed all three friends at once, before skiing as fast as they could down the mountain away from the scary monster. Sindy zigzagged down the hill getting faster and faster. She could do it and it felt amazing! But as she was getting to the bottom, she realised she couldn’t remember how to stop.
“Wooaaahhh!” Sindy skidded, flew up into the air and landed in a large pile of snow.
“OMG Sindy, are you okay?” said Jasmine. Sindy giggled. “I did it!” she said, buzzing with excitement. “What happened to the yeti?”
“Um, I think we lost him,” said Holly with a smile.
“Well, I’d like to shake his paw,” said Sindy. “I would never have gone so fast down that hill if it wasn’t for him. Come on, let’s do it again!”
After hours of skiing, when every muscle in their bodies ached, the pals went back to their chalet for warm showers before heading to the local café.
All of them wanted to look their best on their first night out, with Jasmine and Holly ready first. “Come on, Sindy. We’re starving!” they said, as they pulled their boots on.
“You two have some cheek, hogging the shower then rushing me—and I can’t decide between the pink hoodie or the blue one. What do you guys think?”
Eventually the pals arrived at the café and after delicious cheese toasties, crispy French fries and hot tea, decided to head back to their chalet. “Today has been the coolest day ever!” said Sindy. “Even if we nearly got eaten by a yeti!”
“Shh,” said Jasmine, suddenly stopping. “Look!”
“Oh, no!” said Sindy. The friends froze in fear as the familiar giant shadow loomed in a street light up ahead: the same outstretched arms, the massive head, the bulging eyes, the paws the size of tea trays. The girls felt their hearts in their mouths as the figure edged nearer. This time there was nowhere to run. “He looks h-h-hungry,” stammered Jasmine.
The creature came closer and closer and the girls started to shake until…
“What’s up, dudes?”
It was just a boy, on a snowboard. The friendly teen with shoulder-length blonde hair and tanned face wasn’t a giant at all. The light cast a shadow twice his size. The bulging eyes were goggles, his head looked large because he was wearing a helmet, and on his hands were huge padded gloves. His arms were
outstretched because he was balancing on his board—not because he wanted to catch some dinner.
Sindy and her friends collapsed in a fit of giggles before explaining everything to the puzzled teen, whose name was Harry.
“Dudes, things are never as scary as you think they’re gonna be,” said Harry. “Take snowboarding—rippin flake looks dangerous, but it’s just totally crispy, bro!”
“I think that means snowboarding’s really cool,” whispered Holly.
The next day the girls’ new friend started to show them how to snowboard. Sindy, Jasmine and Holly fell over—a lot. But that was all part of the fun.
“Snow is totally rad!” said Sindy after another brilliant day on the slopes. “It’s like seriously gnarly, dude!” Holly and Jasmine looked at their friend. “Oops, I’m starting to talk like a snowboarder, aren’t I?” said Sindy. “What I mean is, snow is amazing. I love it! And it’s helped me to learn to face my fears. If you don’t, you may never know what you’re missing! Race you to the bottom guys.”