Study in contrasts

There’s a bit of snow in Columbus, Ohio. Not news, I know. The whole country seems to be suffering winter storms, road closures and frigid temps.

After 25 years of living in Montana, I can handle a little snow. No problem. I’ve seen a lot worse than this.

Still, when I got up Thursday morning and heard all the schools here were closing early, I thought I’d better get some groceries. Since we’d been gone for a month, there was nothing in the kitchen that wasn’t inside a steel can. I headed outside. After a bit of ice scraping, I backed the car out of our space and shifted into first. As soon as I rolled forward I heard a horrible scraping sound. Not good.

A peek under the car revealed a plastic piece hanging from the bumper.

A few minutes later, I was flat on my back attempting to stick my car back together with duct tape. It was pretty cold on the ground, even with a blanket between me and the snow. That’s when it hit me–reality.

A few days before I was here in Cartagena, Columbia enjoying the beach. It was hot–even in the water which I’m guessing was at least 80 degrees. This was the last foreign port on our two week cruise from Los Angeles to Ft. Lauderdale. We’d been enjoying temperatures in the 80s and sometimes even 90s in port. Sunshine, sunscreen and sunglasses daily. Wardrobe requirements–dress for dinner. The rest of the day we spent in shorts, t-shirts and sandals.

Worries? Make sure you have the key card in your pocket. The crew of the Amsterdam took care of everything else–meals, cleaning, turning down the beds at night. Decisions? Whether to sit on the deck out in the sun or in air conditioned comfort inside. Whether to read or nap. Skip dessert or–okay, skipping dessert not really an option. Suddenly it’s me and a roll of duct tape keeping things together so I can have carrots, celery and fresh tortillas.

It’s good to be home warm and cozy. Watching out the window as the snowfall outside while visions of warm sandy beaches dance in my head.

What’s your idea of paradise? A ski trip to a snowy peak, body surfing in a warm sea or some other adventure?

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