They've been hard to escape; if you haven't heard re-caps on the news or found them as you wield the TV remote, chances are you have talked about them at work or with the family over dinner. And there are many stories to tell, as the Winter Olympics in Vancouver play out on the ski slopes, the ice rinks, the skeleton and luge tracks.
There are moments in our lives that remind us - sometimes painfully - that the march of time is resolute. I'm not talking about the inevitable body changes or the pressure of responsibility that seems to increase with each passing year as we age but rather something far more heart-rending.
I'm talking about the moment when you realize you won't always have your loved ones surrounding you as you did in childhood.
Usually when it comes to our columns, we write about what's going on in our lives. In a previous column, I made the promise that I wouldn't write too much about my wedding planning. The problem is, that with the exception of car trouble and my fiancé being stuck on jury duty because he thought he wouldn't get selected, wedding planning is pretty much what my life's been all about lately. That was precisely what I was hoping to avoid.
I'm rarely stumped for a column topic but this time was a little different. After tossing around a few ideas in my head, I found myself repeatedly coming back to the same thing. It's not the weather, or some escapade perpetrated by my youngest child … I keep coming back to a feeling of sadness after having experienced a loss. A couple of them, actually.
I had several ideas floating in my head for my column this month but when it came down to putting those thoughts on paper, I was disenchanted with the possibilities, which then lead me to sit and think of all the things that are happening in my life and what the coming year promises to yield.
A colleague and I were recently having a conversation about how quick time passes, even at a weekly paper. I had just completed covering the birthday of Vera Piccetti who celebrated her 107th birthday. As I took the ceremonial photo of her with her cake I joked that she was my job security. After all, I'd been covering this event since she hit the triple digits in 2003.