Welcome again to another Christmas missive from the Canterburys!
Those of you who have been following along from year to year will undoubtedly note that this is our 5th Christmas in Twinsburg. We have a running joke at our house, that since we have moved every five years so far, we’re about due to move again. And, about once a year, something comes up that makes us think about whether we should start packing the boxes and calling the moving company. But as things stand right now we’re settled in for a while, and may actually break the record for length of stay in one location (5½ years in Virginia). We enjoy the peace and quiet of our neighborhood, where the loudest noises we hear are the frustrated golfers on the course behind our home, and we enjoy the amenities of the nearby Cuyahoga Valley National Park. If we could actually leave for the 2-3 months of winter every year, life would be darn near perfect!
On the career front, things are progressing well. Nancy is about to complete her 5th year at Key Bank, where she continues to serve as a Project Coordinator. She also advanced to serving as a Project Manager in some cases, a big positive step for her. She is very organized and committed, and everyone agrees she’ll be successful in this new role.
For me, things have changed a bit but largely remained the same. Most of you have probably heard about the Enron/Arthur Anderson accounting debacle by now, and the appearance of a conflict of interest caused by auditing firms doing consulting work. Well, since 1998 I’ve worked for an auditing firm (PricewaterhouseCoopers) doing consulting work. PwC had been looking to sell or spin off the consulting business for a period of time when the Enron scandal hit, and that just accelerated the process. IBM agreed to purchase the consulting unit, so in October I became an employee of IBM. Those of you have kept the Christmas letters from the mid-1990s can refer back and see that I actually worked for IBM (as a contractor, not an employee) back then, so I’m pretty excited about the potential this change brings. However it’s still early in the process, and the only thing that has changed so far is the name at the top of my paycheck.
In other news, Nancy decided that this year was the year she was going to make a serious commitment to her bicycle. She has legs of steel and can ride forever – assuming the bike seat is soft enough. After working up to it all summer, she rode in her first long distance ride, the Hancock Metric Hundred in northwest Ohio. It’s called the Metric Hundred because it is over 100 kilometers (65 miles). She did great and really enjoyed herself. She is already talking about the long rides she is going to do next summer, and the new bicycle she’s getting for Christmas.
We’ve had a very busy vacation schedule this year.
Our two cats Brutus and Snickers continue to be fat and sassy. We’ve also somewhat adopted an outdoor cat that we’ve named Tux. Tux knows where to find a free meal, so he stops by often. Brutus and Snickers are curious about Tux, but not so curious that they want him living inside the house, so we’ll stick with this arrangement.
And finally, a postscript to last year: If you refer to last year’s letter – go ahead, I’ll wait while you get it – you’ll recall that I completed my first (and so far only) marathon in October of 2001. I remember the day well, with the turning leaves showing a spectrum of colors on an otherwise gray day. At the time, I’d been experiencing pain in my lower leg (“shin splints” for you runners) for a couple months leading up to the marathon. However, since I had done all that training and preparation, I wasn’t going to slow down or miss the marathon. After the race, I stopped running in order to recover, but the pain wouldn’t go away. After a couple visits to doctors and some x-rays and other tests, the diagnosis was in. I had a stress fracture in my lower leg. Now the stress fracture wasn’t that big a deal, I didn’t need a cast or any such thing. I just needed to rest my leg long enough to let the fracture heal, which meant no running for a period of time (it was May before I could run again). However, the best part of the ordeal is that I can honestly tell people that I ran a marathon with a broken leg.
Nancy and Jerry Canterbury