As I've mentioned before, I work for a firm that searches for private companies for private equity firms to aquire. I work with a really great bunch of people, and when we close a deal (when a fund purchases a company we've introduced them to) the company does something to celebrate. How we celebrate is tied to how big the deal was.
In December, we not only closed 2 good sized deals, but the last deal of the year was also the 100th deal closed by our firm and it's partners. This was cause for a larger than normal celebration. On the docket - a weekend of skiing/snowboarding in Park City, Utah.
Just thinking about this trip led to so many decisions. - Did I want to ski or snowboard? I've never done either. I polled the people around me, and instant messaged some friends for their opinion. Of course, all the skiers said that skiing was easier, and all the snowboarders said snowboarding was easier. Finally I found someone who did both - he said that skiing was easier to learn, but harder to do, and snowboarding was a little more difficult to learn, but easier to do once he had it down. I went with his recommendation and told them to schedule me a snowboarding lesson early the first day.
But then - I don't have decent shoes for the snow! I've lived in Southern California my entire life, and rarely do I go up to the snow. None of my shoes are really appropriate to be trodding around in the snow with - they either aren't warm enough, or they aren't waterproof, or the bottom has no grip. I was going to need some shoes. Forced to shop. Woe is me.
So I visited Zappos.com and looked around for some good snow shoes. I found a few pairs I liked and tried to decide between them. There was a pair I really liked, but it didn't seem like the most sensible choice. So then I read the reveiews on the "sensible" looking pairs and found them to be not so sensible. Laces breaking repeatedly, dissapointment regarding the comfort of the shoe, etc. The reviews of my not-so-sensible shoe, however, were glowing - warm, comfy, sturdy. Perhaps it was meant to be.
But that's not all I need, right? The company is renting a board for me, but I'll need pants, and a jacket, and snowboarding boots, and thermals, and oh-my-god this free trip is starting to look expensive.
But I've never been snowboarding, and I don't even know if I'll want to go again, so I really don't want to spend all this money on gear I may never use again. Even if I do, how often do I really expect to use it?
Thankfully, it all seems to have come together. My sister-in-law wears the same size shoe I do, and said I could borrow her boots, and my longtime friend happens to be about the same size I am and has all the necessary clothing - pants, gloves, beanie, and a jacket. I'm set! And I didn't have to shell out $600. :)