The last rose of summer

Yesterday evening, I went for a walk and happened upon a rose bush still in bloom. It was a cheerful sight in the midst of the usual autumnal flower colors of yellows, golds, and whites. Another flower color that I enjoy seeing in the Fall is the rich, deep purple of wild asters. On myContinue reading “The last rose of summer”

Love to teach

I love to teach and was reminded of that after last night’s class session, the second week of the Fall semester. If done well, it is exhausting and exasperating and a ton of work, yes, but also very rewarding. The class I am teaching has the largest enrollment of any class I’ve ever taught spanningContinue reading “Love to teach”

Not all who wander are lost

This quote from J.R.R. Tolkien is one of my favorites. One of the heroes of his epic stories is a man who has spent many long years in lonely exile, wandering the wilderness, and this line is from a poem about him. Aragorn is born a king but does not achieve that status until muchContinue reading “Not all who wander are lost”

Ready or not

Ready or not, here comes the Fall. I’m not. Ready, that is. On my plate today, among many other things, is to finish grading final papers for my summer class. When I looked at enrollment for my Fall class, I found to my surprise that there are 22 people on the list. That’s more thanContinue reading “Ready or not”

Cumulative impact

The many ongoing uncertainties we face are having a cumulative impact. You know the saying, “once bitten, twice shy”? I think there’s a similar principle at work with the pandemic, economic conditions, injustices, poor government leadership, and more. Uncertainties tend to reshape our regular, “healthy” view of life in ways that we may not evenContinue reading “Cumulative impact”

Fewer days ahead than behind

For me, there are fewer days ahead than behind. It’s a little weird to think about. What does that mean? What can be done about it? What might change as a result of this reality? Big questions, with few clear answers. For starters, this does not represent some sort of crisis. It just is theContinue reading “Fewer days ahead than behind”

The post vacation haze

You know the drill: You plan a vacation and look forward to it happily You then bitterly regret said vacation in the last few days before leaving because there is some unwritten, universal law that says everything at work and at home must go haywire right up to the time of departure You go onContinue reading “The post vacation haze”

An update on Fall planning

The picture of what is ahead for Fall at my institution is gradually becoming less opaque. As noted before, I am not a fan of a “we’ll all be together again” spin on what is to come. The fact is that there is even more hard work ahead this summer than previously realized, and withContinue reading “An update on Fall planning”