We packed our bags and presents and cats and groceries and headed for a christmas in the country, for the very first time. Christmas is probably the least probable time of the year when we find ourselves thinking of change. Yet it is change my thoughts unwillingly return to each year, and the reminder of how much I was against the changes that shaped our christmas from a beloved tradition to a glove that just does not fit.
Traditions are not meant to be broken, but sometimes life goes on and old ways cling to us desperately like the last leaves on winter-bare trees. Sometimes a shrug and a shake may be a better way. Sometimes a sparse arrangement of the most precious baubles and garlands and angels is better than a tree so covered in tinsel one barely sees the branches underneath. Even if it seems like traditions can be set in stone, they all have had to flex through time to stay on board. Sometimes it is time to gently nudge them into new grooves and discover how surprisingly smooth this can be, and how welcome the end result.
(Loviisa, Finland; December 2014)
It was one of those days when a meeting requires not a single step out into the city. Was I really in Zurich, or was I in limbo, like the man who lived in an airport terminal for years? At least the last leg of the year featured a watercolor sky. And a pair of mysteriously exchanged gloves. The ones I now have are prettier than the ones that went home with another lady. Unfortunately she also took my precious fleece liners.
My gloves were from Cambridge and my liners from the US. Even as a glove, life tosses one around like a leaf in the wind. Fortunately there will be no more tossing for me as I am firmly grounded until January. I hope you all are enjoying a quiet and peaceful last week of the year.
(Zurich, Switzerland; December 2014)
Same location one week later, when I only remembered the approximate location (after Nevada and before Cheyenne) and after studying Google Maps for about two minutes. The world is small – or Google Maps is great? Which is more frightening?
(Wyoming/Colorado, USA; December 2014)