|2009 Year in Review|
|How we spent 2009.|
|FeedbackBy Preston Hunt and Aimee Green, 31 December 2009|
We are so grateful that 2009 was another wonderful year for us. We are both healthy and happy--and thankful for our blessings.
Some of the biggest and most fabulous news this year was that Preston reached his five-year cancer-free anniversary. This is a big deal for any cancer survivor, and statistically, things just look better and better from here on out. We threw a party to celebrate, jamming more friends than we ever have had into our condo. Our friend E Ben wrote and sang a touching and clever guitar song about Preston's battle against Hodgkin's disease.
Despite the good news on the cancer front, Preston did have a big health downer this year when he crashed his bicycle while riding to work. He took a shortcut through a parking lot and hit a poorly-marked speed bump. The fall cracked his helmet and broke his right collarbone and left wrist. A very guilty-feeling Aimee picked him up at the emergency room several hours later (after re-charging her cell phone and listening to the messages). While he is pretty much healed up now, the crash did put a damper on the rest of the summer. He wasn't able to partake in his favorite outdoor activities, such as cycling, hiking, and surfing.
In the health department, Aimee clobbered one of her biggest fears by getting all of her wisdom teeth removed. Despite the dental surgeon's predictions that she would be on the couch for four days because this was serious surgery for his "geriatric" patient, she was up on her feet by the second day.
When we weren't getting hurt or recovering, we made a big effort to go to yoga classes at least once a week. We are both more flexible and better at balancing for it. Aimee can finally do "airplane" and Preston figured out a proper "sun salute."
We took two big vacations this year, the first being a week-long trip to upstate New York where we had the honor of staying at Baekeland Camp, renowned in the area as one of the great Adirondack camps. Freed from the influence of cell phone service, television, radio, and newspapers, we enjoyed a week of serene isolation and the time-honored lake traditions of canoeing, lying on the dock counting stars, and backgammon with friends.
In September, we spent 17 days in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. Preston was still healing from his bike crash, thus relegating Aimee to Sherpa duty, toting all of the luggage between the various airports, cars, hotels, and train stations. Aimee noticed people staring at us--a tall and fit-looking man walking next to a woman wearing two backpacks, carrying a duffel bag, and pulling a rolling suitcase. Sometimes Aimee would blurt out "He broke his collarbone and can't carry anything!"
The euros seemed to fly out of our money belt, but we had some terrific experiences. While driving on the autobahn, we each summoned the courage to reach 100 MPH and avoided becoming autoschlangen ("car snakes"), people who hold up traffic in the fast lane. We also visited Oktoberfest and marveled at the rows of circus-style tents that each hold up to 5,000 jolly Germans. Aimee was astonished that there wasn't a water glass in sight. The Bavarians we spoke with told us water was unnecessary when there was beer to be had.
Hiking amidst the valleys and peaks of the Swiss Alps was a highlight of our trip and the site of this year's holiday photo. Although Switzerland has some of the most expensive food we've ever encountered, the lush, cow-filled pastures ensured that the chocolate and cheese were plentiful and cheap.
Back home from our travels and healed from the year's physical challenges, we are looking forward to a quiet holiday season in Portland, catching up on home projects, and reading. Preston signed us up for a New York Times subscription. We've been overloaded with articles to read from the Times, The Oregonian, and a Financial Times subscription from a neighbor who moved but forgot to cancel it. We are feeling much more worldly. (Do you know who the first Green party member of the European Parliament was? Neither did we until now!)