Donna and I went home to Vermont this year for a white Christmas. Vermont did not disappoint us. This picture, looking across our front yard to the houses on the other side of the street, was taken a couple days before Christmas. There is about 2 feet of snow on the ground and a Canadian goose wandering around the front yard. We have never seen one in our yard before, although they often stop at the pond or in the fields nearby on their annual migrations.
Normally they winter much further south, although they sometimes will stay in Vermont if someone feeds them. After a while he disappeared when we weren't looking.
A live (soon to die) evergreen tree is a traditional decoration in American homes at Christmas. When our children were little we had traditional Christmas trees, but when you live with three artists you have to forgo tradition for creativity. So at some point we switched to non-traditional Christmas trees. This is an army surplus parachute, hung from the ceiling with Christmas tree lights on the inside. The bed Donna is placing her doll in was a Christmas present.
This picture is also in our living room. It was nice to have a real wood fire in the fireplace...another "White Christmas" amenity. The crown I'm wearing came from a Christmas "popper". These are constructed a cardboard tube wrapped in paper and and when you pull on the ends the surprise pops out. I had never seen these before but Donna got one for each stocking this year because Paul suggested "things that pop and spread confetti all over.".
Peter's girl friend Florencia(left picture) and Paul's girl friend Caroline(right picture) were both able to join us for the beginning of the week, before going home to spend Christmas with their own families. It was a delight having them there.
After Christmas the four of us drove to New York City and saw the Broadway show, "Wicked". This is the story of the Wizard of Oz told from the point of view of the Wicked Witch of the West ("It's not easy being green".) The show was a lot of fun, with fantastic customs, sets and music. Lots of flying by the monkeys and the witches.
After the show Donna took some pictures of the streets of New York, like this one of Peter and Paul. This embarrassed our sons, who wanted to look like seasoned denizens of NYC, not hick tourists.
Although NYC is different from India in many ways here are two shots that reminded us of India.
This one of a bicycle-rickshaw is not very clear because of the general darkness with many bright lights. But if you look close you will see that the rickshaw pedal-er is actually a woman--something I think you would be hard pressed to find anywhere in India. The second one is a street vendor selling cashmere scarves and pashmina shawls. (These are not very good shawls, because we spent a lot more than that here in India!)
Donna and Joe have finished their assignment in India. Occasionally they still travel somewhere.