Every year, as I'm about to start another season patrolling (this will be my 6th,) it blows my mind that I'm up here doing this. My family on the hill is a bunch of guys who either have 20 or more years of patrolling under their belts, or are fresh out of college and have been skiing since they were toddlers. Many of the older guys are into 40+ years -- one is a retired airline captain who's beginning his 42nd year on patrol -- longer than he flew! I, on the other hand, was a California beach bum of sorts, who had never skied until I moved to New England back in 1980! And, even then, I didn't start skiing until I was 40! Yikes!