If you see a whole thing - it seems that it's always beautiful. Planets, lives... But up close a world's all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life's a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. - Ursula K. LeGuin

Friday, January 14, 2011

An Ominous Start To The Semester

The spring semester started this week with two snow days.  Unfortunately my first class (which only meets once a week) was cancelled.  This is one of my favorite classes to teach and I was looking forward to getting started.  A bigger problem is how to make up for the lost day.

In part due to the delayed start and in part due to my entire winter break being eaten up with the move, I have not felt prepared all week.  I enjoy routine and structure and had been happily anticipating its return.  Instead the week has been spent with a great deal of uncertainty: will the university be open or closed?  will my pregnant teen mom go into labor or not?

I have a very anxious doula client (who is as sweet as can be) and she is due this week.  We have been in and out of the hospital and induction has been scheduled and cancelled.  I have arranged and rearranged my schedule around her anticipated delivery and still there is no baby.  While this is all within the range of normal, I didn't realize how disruptive it would be at the beginning of a semester.

The delayed start was not all bad however.  In keeping with this year's word, I was able to prepare many of my spaces this week.  I finally cleaned and organized my office at work and am loving it more than ever.  I also managed to set up my home office, and like everything else in the new house, it is far superior to my last one.  Perhaps more importantly, I cleaned off the desktop on my computer and cleaned out both my bag and my wallet.  There is something about having all that clutter around me; having to sort through flotsum and jetsum every time I try and do the most menial of tasks; that drives me crazy. Now everything is neat and clean and accessible.

The final space that needs to be cleaned up is my car.  Buying the second car for b means that the car we originally bought for me has once again become my car.  Over the years it has acquired junk from both me and b and in the week of the move it became filled with last minute items.  b has promised to clean it out and clean it up for me this weekend.  Once that is done all my spaces will be as I like them.

On a related note, when we rented this house we were excited to have a fireplace again.  However we were disappointed to realize it was gas.  At the top of the growing list of 'what we will do if we buy the house' was converting it back to wood-burning.  Last weekend b unsuccessfully tried to get a fire going and, in reporting the absence of any gas-flow, asked the landlord if it could be converted back.  Although surprised that we wanted wood instead of gas, he was happy to comply. Yesterday he came over and within half an hour we had the fireplace we wanted.

Tonight I stopped on the way home to pick up some wood.  I got home to find b already sitting in front of a roaring fire as he had thought and done the same thing.  Our home space is now complete.


Julie said...

I love the picture! I'm so glad you got your fireplace. They are awesome (and smell so good). I could stare at one for hours.

It stinks that you had a class cancellation at the beginning of the semester. It's rough to start out with the stress of having to catch up.

I hope things work out well for your doula client. You are so good hearted to be giving of yourself to her during this time. It will mean a lot to her.

Final thought...my office looks like a string of tornadoes went through it. You put me to shame...haha!

Annie said...

Hi Brigindo,
A fire sounds so nice, and wood fires are always the best. I'm happy for you, you have your spaces under control. (I must, must work on my household clutter.) Maybe the extra week for the one class will give you time to prepare and evaluate how you want to organize it. Hopefully, the students will read ahead or contact you for the syllabus. The biggest uncertainty now is the timing for the baby!

Psycgirl said...

I love your 2011 word! Space is so important!

Catherine said...

I prefer a wood fire too! So much nicer than gas.

ruth pennebaker said...

I enjoy routine and structure and had been happily anticipating its return.
So glad to hear you feel that way, too. I'm pining for both right now. -- Ruth, who's in the middle of a move

Jackie said...

This reminds me of the time when I was studying in a university with my best friend. All the delays because of the weather excites us when we're still students 'coz we get to study again and be more prepared for the next meeting. We also had to consider used cars for sale in Indianapolis to buy another one 'coz of the mess in the ONLY car we're driving to school. The Indianapolis used car dealer gave us a great deal, maybe because we're young and just students. Anyway, is that your fireplace? Looks nice. Good luck this semester!