A very happy New Year to all my readers.
Brutally cold temperatures in Toronto and other parts of Ontario dampened New Year’s Eve celebrations. The annual outdoor party outside City Hall in Toronto was condensed and actually cancelled in Ottawa on account of the cold. Temperatures of -30C are not conducive to wandering about in the streets.
However, my hardier friends are out in the countryside cross-country skiing and enjoying the winter wonderland scenery. When you live in Ontario, you have to take the weather in your stride or you could be trapped in the house for weeks. Having said that, I’m not striding about much in this weather and I’m glad to be returning to Rome for the rest of the winter.
It’s hard to predict what 2018 will bring, given the depths we sank to in 2017 with heads of countries hurling insults against each other such as ‘You’re fat’ and ‘You’re old’. It was hard to believe that grown men could behave like this, never mind heads of state. Still, there were some glimmers of positivity. The MeToo movement empowered women to speak out against sexual exploitation. The difficulties of Brexit has slowed down other European populist movements from heading in the same direction. The Paradise Papers publicized how the rich avoid paying taxes. Small things in these turbulent times but we can only hope that 2018 will continue with small battles won if not the big ones.