Now that it is November, I remember fondly the searing heat of August and September in Veszprém, Hungary. All those hills and all those clothes drenched in sweat. But this is the time and place of contrasts. Last week in sunny Rome I was enjoying a cappuccino al fresco at the Piazza Navona, and listening to a jazz group play Sinatra's "I did it my way." But that was last week and my plane landed in Budapest in a temperature of one degree celsius. Now back in Veszprém we have been fogged in for several days. A low-lying mist covers the town with crystal. This morning the fog froze on trees, houses, cars, and pavements. Early morning rush hour was a nightmare for many people, but city workers were out sprinkling gravel on every surface: roads, sidewalks, cobblestones, steps. It reminded me of Thomas Merton's powerful 1965 comment on the weather--that he had "a deep and legitimate need to know...what the day is like, to see it and feel it, to know how the sky is grey, paler in the south, with patches of blue in the southwest, with snow on the ground, the thermometer at 18, and cold wind making your ears ache. I have a real need to know these things because I myself am part of the weather and part of the climate and part of the place, and a day in which I have not shared truly in all this is no day at all. It is certainly part of my life of prayer." Good words to live by. Let the fog roll in and beautify this small part of my world.