11 years ago we spent about a month living in Vienna, beginning at Thanksgiving and going through to the new year. Math Man had a residency at the Schrodinger Institute there, which came with an apartment; I was on maternity leave after the birth of Barnacle Boy. It was an amazing experience. Every day I packed the boys into their double-stroller (kitted out with a terrific insert that let you pop a baby in and zip up, no need to mess with snowsuits!) and toured the city. I found playgrounds for Crash to run off his energy, cafes in which I could feed him french fries and nurse the Boy and when all were full and sated, I hit a museum or church while they snoozed in the stroller.
The weather was cold and damp. My overwhelming impression was of darkness, we saw the sun the day we arrived and never again. The nights in the apartment were chilly, and when I would put the Boy back into his crib after nursing him, the clammy sheets would wake him up. I finally bought a baby hot water bottle to keep his spot warmed, which worked like a charm. For Christmas that year, celebrated in a small town in the Italian Alps, Math Man produced a carefully wrapped gift: the mother of all hot water bottles. It was huge, and had a perfect seal. It still warms my feet and my heart!
Today Crash was home from school, not feeling his best. He found the bottle, and curled up on the sofa with it. I'm hoping I can get it back!!