But this is my first Winter in Europe, and soon to be my first Christmas in France, growing to a list of “firsts” for all of us.
Our baby, for example, seems to have a first everyday, his latest being his first cold, and first really bad cough. And I guess his first cold gave me my first cold caught by/or given to a baby. Poor kid.
It’s not thick, but still noticeable.
Our neighbors are all working feverishly to shovel the snow off sidewalks, decks and pathways. This is all commendable, though a little funny. Only about a half-inch of snow has fallen since these mini-storms began, and the shovels have come out 3 or 4 times already. Me coming from the Northwest US would have me shoveling 3-6 inches off decks at a time. And in Arizona I had to shovel nothing more than the riff-raff away from my car.
A year ago I didn’t know exactly where I would be in December 2009. My wife and I were expecting a child; I had just returned from a tour of Germany’s renewable energy sites, and began to write a series on the topic; and the possibility of a year in Germany was still just a possibility–who knew what doors would open, and which steps we would take.
Now we are a family of three. We are preparing to spend Christmas with our extended, extended family north of Paris. I will have to try to dig deep for the French skills I know are resting somewhere in my brain. And shortly thereafter, we will move to Munich, and start over again.
In the list of “Most stressful events” in life, moving, getting a new job, and having a baby are in the top 10. I am sure getting married is somewhere in there too. Our family has lived all of these events in the last 2 years, some of them (changing jobs, moving) many times, but we are, so far, still going.
I again can’t say where we will be in December 2010, but I am hoping we are as comfortable and successful as we are now. With or without snow.