The week gone by — Feb. 28

“I just want to wake up and it not be February,” Suzi said the other morning.

I got where she was coming from. Lately, it has felt like Punxsutawney Phil — pictured above from when I visited the town long ago — predicted six more weeks of February, and not winter, when he saw his shadow on Groundhog Day.

Although I must say, she went a little too far when she said she was tired of seeing Aaron Judge on my Yankee calendar. (Having looked at our upstairs Germany calendar, she informs me she is also tired of Dresden.)

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Oh yeah … sometimes stuff is just funny

There’s a local bank here outside of Boston — we think it’s this one — that has an ad where a mother asks her daughter about school that day, and the daughter replies that someone from the bank came to speak to her class.

Mom is surprised that an actual human being would come to class, and the ad (which I couldn’t find online) goes on to talk about the bank’s personal, human touch separates them from the competition.

Since I love picking apart commercials — which I’m sure would be awesome to break out at parties if I ever actually tried it — I started wondering what it would be like if an automated phone system paid a visit to the classroom.

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Getting out by running an errand

It takes right around four minutes to get from my driveway to the shopping plaza at the bottom of the hill.

I know this because I can play one full song during that time, and in this case, the final notes of Josh Groban’s “Angels” — a stirring cover of Robbie Williams’ hit and a rare instance where the original and its cover are both terrific — play as I pull into the parking lot.

I’m not going to say I provide accompaniment that can only be safely heard by me, alone, in my car … but I’m not going to say I don’t.

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The week gone by — Feb. 14

I liked living there perfectly fine, but it seemed as if, compared to the rest of Cape Cod, Hyannis wasn’t held in quite as high regard.

In spite of the beach area pictured above, overall, I don’t think the town was considered quite as picturesque as other areas of the Cape, and may have had more people who were openly not rich. And there’s a mall, which is sooooo déclassé.

But it has the Kennedys.

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Thirteen steps to Europe

Up the stairs we went, settling in for our adventures.

This week, it was Romania from Transylvania to the Black Sea, followed by Zermatt in the Swiss Alps to Lake Geneva. Before that, we took the finest trains from Sofia to Istanbul, Vienna to Trieste, Pisa to Lake Garda, Athens to Thessaloniki, the Black Forest to Hannover and Barcelona to Mallorca. 

Not for real, of course — although Barcelona, Switzerland and Germany are on our wish list for … someday — but the room I once pretended was a portal to sporting events is now our passport to some of Europe’s greatest sites.

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An answer that hit me right in the gut

Long-distance dating — such as when I was living outside Albany, New York and she was in Connecticut at the start of our relationship — can produce its share of oddities in the name of getting together, somehow.

Compared to some couples, we weren’t that far apart — only about two hours — so one of us would make the trip to the other’s most weekends.

On one of those weekends, the place where Suzi worked took part in a convention for home-schoolers, which is how I ended up at a table of 18th-century toys and games on the University of Hartford campus, trying to figure out how to use a whirligig.

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Memories of snowstorms past

I had about six inches of snow to clean up this morning, practically a light workout after last week’s 18 inches or so and giant plow-induced drifts at the top of my driveway.

For some reason, however, I felt like someone had run over me with a truck when I was all done. Fortunately, it appeared to have just been early morning exertion combined with not eating much for breakfast — I did last week’s work after lunch — so a little bit of rest and a small plate of pasta had me feeling like new again.

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The week gone by — Feb. 7

Every weekday afternoon, Suzi and I watch “BBC World News America” on our local PBS station.

Katty Kay is the regular anchor, but her usual Friday fill-in, Laura Trevelyan, was at the desk last week. That had us wondering who might cover last Friday: Nada Tawfik, Larry Madowo, the woman whose name I can never remember …

… “You,” Suzi said.

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Things will be ‘normal’ someday … whatever that means

The other day, as I was again contemplating the question of how we can send a man to the moon and store all of the world’s information in a device small enough to fit in the front pocket of the jacket I was wearing but not develop a snowplow that creates massive snowbanks at the end of every driveway (see also: umbrellas that don’t disintegrate in the wind), I had to stop so I could get more gas for my snowblower.

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