14 April 2015


What to do in the Easter weekend? Go for a hike, of course! At least; that was what the answer used to be. Since the dawn of time, my Dutch hiking friends have been going to some nearby foreign region to spend this short holiday leisurely hiking around. I've been doing it for years myself! But moving abroad changes that.

It tends to take many hours to get to our destination. And if you're living abroad, it becomes much more. And then you've travelled for an entire day to end up somewhere that is not even half as pretty as your back yard. I don't come anymore! And I know it's nice just for seeing friends, but with all the travel involved it's not an efficient way.

So then what? Stay home? Work? Travel elsewhere? I contemplated visiting the Netherlands, but that's a funny choice if all your friends have just left the country. I contemplated visiting my sister in Finland, but that timing wasn't good for her. In the end I didn't plan anything.

And then my other sister phoned. She had time to visit me! And she didn't choose Easter, but the weekend after. And that gave me the idea I would just work over Easter, so I would feel good taking days off to spend with her only days later. Plan!

Two things got in the way. Or three. One: working when the university is closed is rather depressing; it is empty and cold. Even if the weather outside is nice, my office stays freezing for a long time. It's not very motivating. Second: the weather indeed was great. And third: I managed to lose my access card. With the university closed, that did it! And I did do some stuff: I tracked down my office mate Juan, who is both staff and student, so he has a card for each function, and can spare one. But that card would only get me into the office, and not at my cores. And it's the cores it's all about these days!
Fog over the strait

So then what? A reasonable thing to do would be going into the mountains. If it is great weather that's the obvious thing! One day I got up early to do just that, but when I got up and looked out of the window I stared straight into a pea-souper of a fog. Forget it then! I checked whether the fog reached beyond the strait and then aborted the mission. So then what? I did some work (before I lost the card), I did some chores, I did a bit of reading the newspaper while drinking coffee, I wrote letters, I took steps towards landing in this century (more news about that later!), I contemplated going on holiday this year (more about that later too!), I did my weekend training run, I bought new shoes, and I didn't do an awful lot of Welsh (oh dear).

And then, on Monday evening, I checked the weather forecast and saw that the next day would be perfectly bright. I decided I should go for it after all! I got my bag ready and set the alarm at 6.30. The Easter weekend would go out with a bang! Crib Goch here I come!

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