And Then You Turn Around

Somehow November arrived, and while I know it has been said over and over again, forgive me for putting it out there once more: time goes so, so fast. How? 

In August you live in anticipation. It’s a gold-plated problem, really, living in the anticipation of four months worth of life in Europe. But it’s still stomach-turning, and trying to picture what days will be like a few weeks out only yields fogginess. So you do what August lets you do. The logistics, the passport photos, flounder under complicated Dutch pronunciations. But then it’s the day. And you wake up, and you drive, and you say goodbye, and you fly, and you take the train/bus/bike. After tripping on your shoelaces many times, you finally hit your stride. And here you are at November. Autumn is both the same and very different in Holland. The leaves don’t hold their color like their friends in the mitten do, but it’s been a beautiful sight nonetheless. I’ve always been a fan of season changes. I think our bodies change, too, and we evolve necessarily – right along with the earlier sunsets and crisp mornings (and the arrival of brussels sprouts).

a saturday at the market in november

It’s getting chilly here. When I’m lucky, I can smell fireplaces burning on the bike ride back to my apartment at night. Garland hangs across the city streets, from building to building. You see the twinkle lights twice: once on the branch of every tree, and a second time in their white reflection on the dark blue canal waters at night. It’s like the trees are dancing.

And when your knuckles get too cold from gripping the handle bars on your bike, you pull to the side and find a warm pub and slide into a cozy seat. Then each person orders a beer they’ve never tried before and you split an order of dutch patat. Sit and talk, sit and talk, and it’s November. 

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8 responses to “And Then You Turn Around

  1. Jack Keenan

    Where’s my Dutch windmill?

    Grandpa Jack

  2. Glad to hear everything is coming together! Isn’t it crazy how quickly you adapt to such a seemingly different world?! It will only go by faster now, so enjoy every minute of it.

    Miss you!

  3. Joe

    Hello there, love the picture of that big old tree and your little toes!… It’s funny how time flys but just think…now you have a wonderful place to go back to a re visit..

  4. boo

    As much as I want you to come home … i don’t ever want you to leave your new friends or the streets that you wander and roads that you ride. You look so comfortable over there. I love seeing you in all those photos with that gorgeous smile. I bet the tears will flow on that end as much as they did over here when we sent you on your way.

    ps Get on the stick and find a fuckin’ windmill will you ????

  5. Bill Guarino

    Isn’t it wonderful (and yet sad) how fast the time goes by when you are having fun or are fully engaged? Cae, you’ll never be bored with the positive attitude that you have. Love, Uncle Bill

  6. Annie

    The joy you have for crafting sentences and composing paragraphs to convey your thoughts is palpable. It is clear that you have your Mom’s gift! What a pleasure it is to read about your Fall season.
    I love ya!

  7. Hayley

    I second everything Annie said! Everything. Except she said it better than I probably could have!

    xo

  8. MOM

    And I third Hayley’s comments. This post is my favorite.

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