Ljubuljana and cross-country skiing

I'm sitting in my hotel room nursing a beer (they stop selling take away beers at 9pm, so it's a minibar one that will have to be replaced before the maid gets here and counts them) and revelling in a wonderful day. I've been out here in Slovenia since last Sunday working for the TV station here. It's been very hectic, but we're making real progress.

Today I spent the day with the production manager, Igor, and his family. We started at 08:30 and went up into the mountains for cross-country skiing. I've only ever been alpine skiing, so this was a new experience for me. After a few pointers, Igor and his wife Biljana took off on the more difficult circuit into the forest. Still trying to get the knack of the technique, I clambered on down the easy run alongside the road. It was mostly downhill, so I made good progress. There were moments when I got the technique down, swishing along at a decent pace, but as quickly as I got into the right rhythm I managed to lose balance and tumble into the snow. Still, I think I'll get the technique with practise. It's good fun and seems like it would be like hiking only with alpine scenery. Something to try again!

The rest of the day was spent with Igor's family. Biljana cooked up a great meal and we sat around chatting and drinking wine for the rest of the afternoon. His kids regalled me with stories of their recent ski trips and practised their (already excellent) English on me.

In other news, my mate Saul has made the news for winning the Lemelson-MIT Student Prize for his invention that can mould glasses for less than US$1 a pair, aiming to improve sight around the world. Well done Saul!