"Lucky" Luke Dillon, winner of Tourism Whistler's month-long Whistler Sabbatical Project, is back in his hometown of London, England, and as he gazes out over the big city he is still reeling from the life-changing experience of his sabbatical.
Dillon brought his school friend Tim Davis to share the fun, and the pair sampled the best of the resort, including heli-skiing, bobsledding, and simply tasting an amazing pow season.
"London is so different. I was joking to Tim, as I was stood at the top of Lavender Hill, which is just around the corner from us, and couldn't understand why I wasn't sliding down it despite pointing both my feet downhill.... maybe I should wax and edge my running shoes and see if that helps!" Dillon joked.
"I think my friends and family are a bit confused because I keep talking about 'puking', 'turns' and 'hits'. They have absolutely no idea what I'm talking about!"
Dillon said he learned a lot he could take back to his job in events planning, with the aim of harnessing the "Whistler spirit" in Britain.
"I learned loads of stuff I can take back to work with me. My work is normally based on helping people to have a good time... that's pretty much what Whistler is all about and my time there changed my perspective on the ingredients of a good party and gave me some interesting ideas," he said.
"For many people, London life is about working hard and being 'successful' in terms of money; people just accept that they are going to be bored senseless for at least five days of the week and spend their weekends trying to recover from work. Life really starts when you retire. Life is for living in Whistler and I am determined to take that mentality home with me, or failing that, head back to Whistler."
With London hosting the 2012 Summer Olympics, Dillon said he was given a greater sense of what to expect when the big event finally hits his city in July.
"It was really interesting talking to the people who were around during the (2010) Winter Olympics (in Whistler)," he said.
"People seemed to be saying that, although opinion was divided before the Olympics, whilst it was actually happening it was a real spectacle, everyone enjoyed it and it was the best time to be in Whistler. I absolutely see the same thing in the U.K. in terms of opinion being polarized about how the Olympics will go and what it will be like, but I'm confident now that its going to be amazing."
The moment of departure was agony and ecstasy for him.
"The Sea to Sky Highway has to be one of the most beautiful roads in the world and yet Tim and I were so upset to be driving down it as it meant we were leaving," Dillon recalled.
"I had absolutely the best possible experience with the best weather and met the nicest, most welcoming people."
Kirsten Homeniuk, senior manager marketing services at Tourism Whistler, said no decision had yet been made about next winter's campaign and whether the same format will be followed, but added they were thrilled to host Dillon.
"He was an absolute dream ambassador for sabbatical and the resort. He was extremely well spoken, respectful. Embodied the youthfulness of the Whistler brand. We were really able to extend all those unique experiences of what a visitor can get here," she said.