The temperature this week has vacillated between -19 and -30. The extreme cold is no different to extreme heat, like the + 40 Celsius that hits you in the summer in Italy; it is quite unbearable. You hardly spend any time outdoors, at least not voluntarily. All you can do is step outside very briefly, for a very very brisk walk from home to work and back again. The positive side of the icy weather is that you get a lot of work and reading done. After all, it is quite nice to have an excuse to stay indoors and read. And luckily the winter freeze is almost over. A few more days and we are heading towards spring.