The perks of some chaos

24 Jan 2019

The way from university to my destination took me almost two hours. Which is worth mentioning, because my destination was by no means Cologne, but actually my flat which is under ordinary circumstances less than fifteen minutes by bike or twenty by bus. And although I have never tried it, I am quite sure that even crawling from university to my place would not take me two hours. Under ordinary circumstances.

Tuesday afternoon was by no means an ordinary circumstance. Amazingly all because of some snow. Not a ridiculous amount of it, but quite some snow. It appeared relatively fast, in defence of the chaos it ultimately created, but the result was still quite astonishing. Busses weren’t coming — and if they were, they were delayed and soon got stuck on the street with all the cars. The university surroundings were one big traffic jam — and after spending an approximate thirty-minute-bus ride from Erasmus to the Radboud UMC, I made the decision that enough is enough.

I am not integrated enough in Dutch culture to be able to bike through a snow storm (even a minor one), so the only possibility was walking back home, which, again, under ordinary circumstances is everything but a problem. I like walks through Nijmegen almost as much as I like naps, but I also like the concept of warmth. So walking from the university to my place, although I have done it at least a hundred times, was not as pleasant of an activity as it usually is.

When Carrie Bradshaw is running through a snow-covered New York in the first Sex and the City movie during New Year’s Eve in order to reach Miranda, she seems to have the time of her life. There is a beautiful version of Auld Lang Syne playing in the background and just re-watching it on YouTube makes me tear up a little bit. This, however, is not very close to reality. Shocking, I know, but the reality appears to be much colder — and since my phone got stuck on Easy Lover by Phil Collins, I did not get my Auld Lang Syne-moment either.

So already cold and tired from the long day, I was not in the best mood. But here is the thing: while walking back home, I came across quite some people having a walk with their dogs or manoeuvring their children on sleights. They were having a good time. While a snow storm may result in chaos and I did not particularly enjoyed dealing with it on Tuesday, it does have its beauty. It is a good reason to stay inside — or to take a walk, to tuck in a blanket — and to slow down for a moment.

Every two weeks, Antonia will add the songs she writes about to the Spotify playlist below. This way, she creates a soundtrack to her time in Nijmegen. Click left and right for more songs.

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