A life is full of anniversaries of special times and momentous moments. Six years ago last December, Jo and I began exchanging emails. Five years ago last October, I travelled to Scotland to meet Jo for the first time in real life and in January of 2005 – five years ago this week – Jo visited me in Switzerland for the first time.
We enjoyed wonderful weather over an alpine winter weekend, beginning with a sledge run down the road from Bussalp back to Grindelwald, when frostbite in the shady woods was helped a little by some Glühwein half way down. We travelled by train through metre-deep snow on the Brünig pass to get to canton Obwalden, where we visited Jo’s childhood holiday destination of Melchsee Frutt and her godparents’ hotel, freezing Jo’s hair in the process and encountering temperatures as cold as I’ve ever experienced in the mountains.
As a last adventure out into the snow, we headed for the plateau at Männlichen by cable car and sledged back to Grindelwald via Holenstein, taking in a perfect, crisp winter day, glorious sunshine, superb views and a wealth of happy memories. It was this time together that truly cemented the early stages of our relationship and gave me the feeling that I had indeed found the woman I wanted to spend my life with.