After almost two weeks with temperatures below freezing, the warm will return next week, thawing the canals and melting away the last drifts of snow. The wintery weather has hit Europe and North Africa (!) hard. In Amsterdam, the frozen canals have everyone bringing out their skates and throwing parties on the ice. Although I conquered my fear of biking on the snow and ice several years ago, I spent the first few days of freeze walking around the city in my trusty Oregon hiking boots, enjoying the quiet of the city and the crunch of the snow beneath my feet.