far too much writing, far too many photos

A long, long trip, relatively painless as long, long trips go. All connections made, all customs hooha endured without problems worth mentioniing, all sorts of technologies conspiring to cart me across the face of the planet, across thousands of miles of cold, deep ocean — keeping me warm, reasonably well-fed, reasonably well-entertained. All in one day. Amazing!

I’d left the house in dark, early-morning Madrid dragging four heavy bags (including the monster wheeled duffel), each crammed with as much STUFF as I could convince to fit inside. When I stepped off the bus at the end of the journey’s least leg late Monday night in cold, windy, snow-slathered Montpelier, all four bags got off with me, each one making it through the loadings and transfers and unloadings without a hitch. Yee-ha!

My car waited nearby, reluctantly came to life after spending the day out in 0 degree weather. Fifteen or so miles later: long, snowy driveway, garage, cold house, me stepping inside 22 hours after I’d stepped out the door in Madrid.

As the plane touched down in Boston – the last rays of the setting sun painting patches of fiery color inside the cabin, a mirror image to the way the rising sun had stained windows and walls of the departure lounge at Barajas airport that morning with brilliant red/orange light — the voice on the intercom welcoming us to, er, wherever said the local temperature was just above freezing. Which did not prepare me for the raw, damp, wind-blown cold that gripped me when I stepped out the terminal door to wait for the Greyhound bus. A blast of rude weather that made my entire body contract convulsively, me used to Madrid’s version of cold — not, let me assure you, in the same category at all in any freakin’ way. The residents of the Spanish capital bitch and moan when the temperature there sinks down into the 40s and 30s, but they rarely experience true, serious cold. Not nowadays, anyway, in this time of global temperatures swinging slowly upward. And I’ve gotten used to that kinder, gentler style of winter — re-entry into this harsher cold-season reality came as an ill-mannered wake-up call.

And after a couple of minutes of pacing around in a frantic circle — hands shoved deeply into my pockets, collar pulled up, my bus nowhere in sight — I grabbed my bags and retreated back inside. Into the little antechamber between the outdoors and the terminal, where two enormous circular vents blew roaring streams of warm air. The bus eventually showed, I found myself a seat, enjoying the heat, and the quiet of being one of only two passengers.

[continued in next entry]


Solstice afternoon, Christmas four days away — northern Vermont:

Madrid, te echo de menos.

One Response to “Back to Vermont, part I”

  1. EuroYank

    Great blog and photos! You almost have as many photos as I do.

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