A long gap without a post comes to an end with this undramatic and probably unperceptive bit of fluff. However, for the first time in a week, I am able to take some moments to compose a brief paragraph or two, however little I feel available to my weak mind to say.
I have been working solidly at school, substituting, as I noted earlier. My total today reaches eight days in a row, and I have felt some stress returning to what amounts to fulltime teaching again, but the students have remained accepting and pleasant for the most part, and I have been able to partake in the pleasure of the speech team earning all One ratings at the state contest (a school record) and furthermore, racking up six All-State Outstanding Speaker nominations (not quite a record and a tie for second place, I believe, but so close as not to matter really)! I have also been able to contribute to the final Andrew High School play by blocking both acts for the absent director. And I get paid a pittance, but the administration is trying to make it “worth my while.” Good news all around, however inadequate I now feel myself as an instructor.
If being back in the saddle again educationally rubs me a little raw, weʼll have to put that down to a flabbier old man taking up those no-longer familiar reins once more. (Yeah, I actually thought about that convoluted bit of metaphorical cowpoke gas…)
Additionally, my summer job with USDA APHIS seems to be a lock, so thatʼs good news. I have some paperwork I expect to arrive in the mail today for me to fill out as quickly as possible and return so that I can get on the payroll and be ready for training in mid-April. More on that to report as I know something and discover whether reporting on all that is really appropriate and acceptable…
We spent the weekend away from home (and so I was not along with the speech kids when they had their amazing and record-setting day at contest on Saturday). But among other events for those two days, we celebrated friend Dawnʼs birthday (a big one, the number of which I will prudently not reveal). I had a great time (and from my Elysian heights of party enthusiasm, it appeared everyone else had fun, too), and if time permits, I may write on that for the big day itself (tomorrow). Nothing like choice good times with friends old and new to raise the spirits.
All is good.
Spring is even within reach. I looked out the window in the basement just a few moments ago, when I went below to switch the modem off for a few minutes and back on (no, Qwest has not improved that particular situation whatsoever, although I have a phone number to call…), and I spotted the first robin of this new year. He had flown by the time I grabbed the camera and got repositioned, but the cardinal who periodically feeds among the juncos and sparrows still lingered to be photographed. (His contemporary image contrasts amusingly with the snowy one I snapped a few weeks back.)
Today I will have to visit Theisenʼs or Walmart for more bird feed. The greedy avians have gorged themselves on nearly seventy pounds of seed since we bought that no-longer-new feeder. If so much of it (probably hulls of seeds for the most part) werenʼt littering the ground, Iʼd feel proud of us.
I havenʼt written anything in two weeks (too busy working), but I did just reread Kafkaʼs “The Metamorphosis” for the firs time in at least a decade. That was intriguing (I donʼt know why I like that story so well, but maybe discussing it with the Advanced English class will reveal something to me).
Anyway, thatʼs a quick little update on life around here.
My deepest and proudest (however tiny my contribution) congratulations to all Ms. Kocerʼs “Speechers” for 2011! They truly did save the best for last!