Be careful what you wish for. As I was living my glamorous life yesterday, picking up piles of dog poop from the yard, while the H sniffled and coughed inside, I was hoping for snow, both to hide the stuff I couldn't pry loose from the ice, and to return my yard to the pristine smoth-complexioned beauty that only a coating of fresh flakes can provide.
It started last night, just as predicted (I am still getting used to weather, its forecasting, and the accuracy of those forecasts--as an addendum to my earlier snide posting about weather prediction in L.A., let me just add that though there was little weather to predict, what prognostication was offered was more often than not completely wrong) as this morning, everything is blanketed. No wind means a lush white impasto along every tree branch.
It also means deeply covered roads, and that the new au pair's fantasy trip to Times Square to see the ball drop has been delayed a couple of hours. I cannot express how little I would ever have wanted to spend New Year's Eve in Times Square, but that's her heart's desire, and heaven knows I want to keep her happy. That sounds snarky, and I don't mean it to--I genuinely want her to be happy, and if that means occasionally inconvenient trips to the train station, so be it. Today's, sadly, is incredibly inconvenient, because she wants to take the (much cheaper) commuter train, and the station is forty minutes away from us. In the snow? Who knows. Double that, maybe? It's going to be a long morning, though I got up at 6:15 to tell her that the 8 a.m. train was out of the question and she'd have to wait until 10. She looked a little shell-shocked, and I am hoping she understood that this is about safety as much as convenience. She's a lovely young woman, and she eats vegetables, which is more important than I could ever have imagined.
The lovely Swiss, who visited us this weekend to all of our delight, has the eating habits of an eight year old child from Suburban, U.S.A.--white food, meat, cheese. I shouldn't slander suburban children, because my son eats that way, too, and my daughter, despite her occasional affection for carrots, emulates her big brother and isn't much better. But to live with a European who only wanted fish sticks and pasta was rough. The Japanese, let's call her Shi, has a nearly exhausting enthusiasm for trying new foods, and the greener the better. I am, ridiculously, in the habit (only recently identified and admitted to) of cooking to please my au pair's palate, but this time around, the palate is a whole lot more sophisticated.