Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Holiday and Year-End Recount

I spent Thanksgiving and Christmas alone…except for the company of an Angel, of course. But she wasn’t interested in me so much as the turkey and ham. Oh, and the catnip present she got for Christmas. That's my Christmas dinner in the picture.

In many ways, I was satisfied with my company – when you spend vacations and holidays by yourself, it vastly reduces the opportunity for family arguments, long drives in bad weather and having to say you really love the wallet they gave you.

On the other hand, you can’t share your enjoyment of the good weather, the tasty food or how silly the Angel looks with tinsel stuck to her rear-end.

So I took advantage of both situations: I had Christmas to myself, but entertained guests from December 26 to January 2. My niece joined me thru Friday, and a long-time friend visited from Saturday to Tuesday morning.

A Very Surprised Courtney
Since my niece had never been to this part of the country, and since she’s a teenaged girl…I took her shopping. In New York City. It went like this:

“So, how much sightseeing do you want to do while you’re here?” I asked as we walked out to the car at Logan.
“Not much,” she replied.
“Then I guess that means you don’t want to see the Statue of Liberty?”
She stopped walking. “But isn’t that in New York?”

It took Courtney a while, but she finally stopped saying “No way! We’re going to New York?” At least, I think she’d stopped by the time we got on the plane the following day.

We did the usual tourist activities. Our hotel overlooked the WTC site, so we saw that immediately. We glanced at Lady Liberty from Battery Park (she's the speck in the distance) – it was much too cold to take the boat out for a closer look.

We shopped along Canal Street, where I purchased a fake Movado. We rode the subway. We visited Times Square and 42nd Street. She had to buy a t-shirt at the MTV Store. We took dozens of pictures of ourselves with the figures at Madame Toussad’s. (I need to get the rest of those shots developed.)

When we got back to Boston, I gave Courtney a whirlwind tour of the Freedom Trail before dropping her off at the airport.

All in all, it was a truly flying visit. The weather was windy and quite chilly. I look forward to her visiting again, in warmer weather so she can see more of Boston’s sites on foot.

The Goodwitch Arriveth
The day after I put Courtney on a plan to Houston, I picked up the Goodwitch arriving from Austin. The weather surprised us both…it snowed at least an inch that day.

Our first real activity was to make a snowman…using the special kit sent me by the Contis. Goodwitch and I are not very adept at creating snowmen, as you can see. It’s not that we suck, it’s that we have no clue how to make snow bind together into large spheres. Hence, the rather unimpressive result. But we did enjoy sniggering over the ways we used the kit contents. Er, we didn’t photograph all of them. And we never did really use the carrot. We swear.

On Sunday, New Year’s Eve, we chose to be literary tourists. We walked around the farm where Robert Frost once lived, and which inspired many of his poems. Luckily for us, the weather had not warmed enough to melt the snow, providing a picturesque setting. And numb toes.

It was Goodwitch’s suggestion that took us there. I hadn’t realized just how close I lived to such a lovely location. Frost’s Farm is less than an hour north of my home. I can’t wait to walk through again in the Spring and Autumn.

From Derry, New Hampshire, we headed south to Concord, Mass. to walk the paths at Walden Pond, immersing ourselves in the wilderness that inspired Henry David Thoreau.

We had been alone to contemplate Frost’s poetry. But here we encountered many others along the path. I have to admit that the Walden Project and the park’s system have done a fine job of preserving the beauty of the area. However, I agree with the Goodwitch that the number of visitors lowered our enjoyment of Thoreau’s woods. But we did get some mighty fine shots of the pond as the sun set.

Goodwitch and I toasted the New Year at midnight, drinking the champagne my boss gave me for Christmas. After sleeping late, we spent New Year’s Day shopping and enjoying some excellent steaks (if I’m allowed to compliment my cooking). For once I didn’t watch all the bowl games. It felt quite weird. Then again, there are more games to come…but I may not visit with my good friend again for months.

As it was, I was quite saddened to drop her off at Terminal C and drive home today.

It’s back to work tomorrow. Another year has passed me by.

To view the rest of my holiday pictures, click HERE.


SMO said...

Awww... I wanna come visit! -- You know, when the snow melts.

Meesh said...

There is no snow now.

goodwitch said...

I had an awesome time! Meesh...you are the best! I've been telling everyone about my wonderful trip...but just now took the time to blog about it.

And yes, the dinner was fantastic!