Friday, December 23, 2016

Little house in the big woods

"But Laura lay awake a little while, listening to Pa’s fiddle softly playing and to the lonely sound of the wind in the Big Woods. She looked at Pa sitting on the bench by the hearth, the firelight gleaming on his brown hair and beard and glistening on the honey-brown fiddle. She looked at Ma, gently rocking and knitting. She thought to herself, This is nowShe was glad that the cosy house, and Pa and Ma and the firelight and the music, were now. They could not be forgotten, she thought, because now is now. It can never be a long time ago.” 
- Laura Ingalls Wilder in Little House in the Big Woods

Right now, I am on the living room couch at parents' cottage in northern Michigan. The newly-decorated Christmas tree is glowing to my right. My brother is clad in his team's colors, watching a football game. Dad and I are clacking on our laptops. Mom is somewhere upstairs. 

It's my tradition to spend Christmas at the cottage, and this year is no different. Well, I suppose there is one difference: this year, I'm no longer a student, and I brought my work with me. As a post-doc, I have more accountability and more responsibility. I'm doing all I can on my laptop to set myself ahead when I get back to WHOI. I'm writing an application for research funds and the introduction for a future study. I'm keeping track of shipments. I'm getting my bearings for a data analysis I'll start in January. 

Oh, and I'm also snowboarding to my heart's content! 

Fear not, friends, this laptop-clacking is balanced with plenty of powder-shredding. It's good to be outside. It's good to be with family. It's good to be here, and now. 

Wes and I on the chairlift

View from the North Face

Sunset over northern Michigan

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