Saturday, February 18, 2017

On catching up

It's been too long since I've checked in here; I apologize, mostly to myself. It is in this space that I take inventory, piece together the different aspects of my life, find a coherent whole. And this process is always nurturing. Yet, I've squandered this time, obsessing over politics (and not in a good way) and looking over my shoulder at decisions past, until I'm a pillar of salt.

Ah...moving forward. I've settled into my new work routine of teaching only two courses at one college. I am finally on the road to being the teacher I've tried to be -- focused and present for my students. The difference in having an allegiance to one college as opposed to three is profound, at least in adjunctville, the town where I reside. Emails from students arrive in my inbox, and I smile. They care about their grade. They ask about assignments. They explain absences. They use commas and periods correctly! No lowercase i, which would drive me hugely ( bigly?) crazy.

Teaching two classes at one school (did I mention, only!) is akin to living on another career universe. My mind doesn't reel from worries of what I need to do, didn't do or incorrectly did. I'm not a well of resentment...(adjuncts, you understand). On non-teaching days, I sub at a lovely little private school, where students call me Sandy, tell me I'm their favorite sub (I know, it's butter, but still...), ask for my help with their essays, and I take home zero papers, write zero plans. Thus far, it's all working; evil eye, kenehura, we're very well acquainted. It's time for you to look elsewhere--or better, close that eye. For good.

Last weekend I went to a rally for immigrants' rights. I'm proud to say, I stood in the rain with hundreds of others, holding a sign in one hand and an umbrella in the other. I was there with HIAS, an organization I love. Its values and work are close to my heart: support for Syrian and all immigrants. If my students held up their country's flags, we'd be a sea of colors. I would hold two--the country where I was born in and the one that holds a piece of my heart.

Alas...I have found a way to segue to thoughts of my summer trip. I've begun to take mental excursions away from the political mess to the second half of my soul's journey. Last summer it was Prague with a day into the greater Czech Republic (at right). This summer I'm thinking of (note: I didn't yet commit...) Slovakia. I hear Bratislava is an Eastern European gem. My compass aims there; the jury is still out on the remainder. Back to Prague is a strong contender. We'll see. (Evil eye, you've been remanded. Just in case (and I always prepare for Just-in-case), my mother bequeathed me anti-evil eye potions.)

Saturday morning calls. My NIA teacher ends each class by saying "Take three steps into your day." And so, I begin.

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