Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy Holidays from the U.S.

Well we  made it  to  the U.S. Just fine.  I am sitting in my parents kitchen  in Waunakee, Wisconsin  as I type this  blog entry.

Big  thanks to our good friend  Jeff Koren who  gave us  great advice on how to handle the pitfalls of  US  Customs and Immigration . He said I should  go through the  "visitor " line at passport control with Eric  and  that way  we  went through passport  control together.  Sure enough,  we breezed right through!

Got in  last Friday and  had a wonderful  Christmas  with  my Parents  and  my Sister and her family , who  also flew out from  California.   There even was a light dusting of snow still on the ground here , so we ended up having  a  White Christmas  after all.

We then had a fantastic  celebration for my Parents  50th  Wedding  Anniversary on December 27th.  There was a special church service  where they reaffirmed their  wedding vows, which was followed by a dinner and party  with  over  60 friends and  family .

We are here  through  New Year's  and will fly back to London  on Monday.   It is always surprising  how  fast  the time goes by.  There is never enough time to see  all the people you want to see, and who want to see you.  So  to  folks  who  we were unable to  connect with  this trip,  our apologies, but there  was just too much going on  and too little time.    

It is always great to get back to Madison.   I grew up   here  so  it is always  "coming home": for me.   Showing  Eric  around  the UW Madison campus  you find  yourself  awash in  memories.   

Yet as is always the case, you tend to notice the changes   more  than the things  that have  stayed the  same .    Which  is  interesting,   because it tends to be  little things that  change.  

One of my favorite stores on State Street; (The Puzzlebox) is no longer there, yet  State Street Brats remains  as a constant.  A firewall against  a tide of  changes  that might wipe away  all  Madison  traditions. 
Lots of  people have asked us,  if  living in London is   "all that  different"  compared to  here.  And  the answer is obviously,  yes.  It is  very different.  Yet  at the same time it is not so different.   It is the paradox of  how do you define  "home".     Where you  grew up will always be  home, in the sense it is  where you  come from.   Yet  home is far more a matter of where  your life is.   This  will always be where  I am  "from", but  it is  no longer  where  my life is.   

There  have been   some  wonderful moments  this trip.   One of the  most amazing  has been  introducing  Eric  to  one of my oldest  friends.

Some long time readers of this blog may recall one of my first entries was about my dilemma over  reconnecting with  my friend  after  being  out of touch for many years.    As has been so often the case in my life,  I am very lucky to have  friends  who are far  braver and much wiser than I am.

No politics in this posting, sorry. But have no fear, I will have much to say about the nuttiness of the Iowa GOP Caucus next week. The near collapse of the Euro, the Mayans predicting 2012 as the end of the world, and of course random thoughts on Doctor Who....

Happy New Year Everyone. Thanks for reading along!

1 comment:

Biki said...

The concept of 'home' is a very slippery. Because from the time we first drive away, it begins to morph into something that is stagnate and not a living breathing place.

It sounds like you had a fantastic time!

Merry Happy Christmas! Hope your coming year is happy and healthy.