Cha-Cha-Changes


It’s my last sixteen-hour day, probably for a long while. For the past five weeks, I have been teaching 8-1 Monday through Thursday. Two classes that meet ten hours a week each. In addition, I have been teaching three classes that meet once a week: Tuesday night, Thursday night, and Saturday mornings. So, thirty-two hours of teaching weekly. That doesn’t include prep, grading, tutoring (four to six hours a week), or driving time.

This morning, my body refused to cooperate. No, we are not getting up at 5 a.m. it said. Drink all the coffee you want. We will sleep until 6. We will.

One last day! We can do this, I thought as my head lolled and fell on to the arm of the sofa. We can…

Forty-five minutes later, I woke up feeling, if not refreshed, at least awake. But then there was no time to write. I readied  myself for work, put on make up, pressed my dress (yes, I iron my clothes, don’t judge me, they’re usually natural fabrics cotton and silk. They require pressing), and brushed my teeth, hair, and back. It’ll be a while before I stop brushing my back. And then I hurried out the door. Came back in, got my wallet, out to the car, got it started, came back in and picked up the chocolate bars I had promised to my Thursday evening class.

Once a work, I signed in, set up my laptop and iPad, packed everything up again (the classroom was empty, didn’t want to leave my things unattended), went out to the car and got my wallet so I could have more caffeine. Clearly, this was a need.

I have considered that perhaps I am this weary because I know it’s the last day, we’re in the home stretch now!

Tomorrow I am off and will pay bills and get my oil changed. Saturday I teach 9-12:30, and then meet with The Midlothian Writers’ Workshop.

Sunday I rest.

Monday, the world starts new. My classes for the next five weeks are in the evening. 6-10:30 Monday and Wednesday for the 10-hour a week class (there’s only one this session), and my Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday classes remain in place through the end of August. The only morning I will have to leave early is Saturday. Life will be good. I will be able to go to the gym, walk, write, send out submissions. Clean my house!

There are things in my house that simply don’t get done unless I do them, like dusting. Dusting is important. I count it as writing time, because it’s rather mindless and I can think about what I want to write. There are whole colonies of dust-bunnies at my house. And each and every one would terrify Monty Python’s rabbit of Caerbannog. And I must tackle them alone, armed with only a duster and iPod.

So, instead of facing lunch time alone, I will be facing the mountain of dust, and stack of books. I will be writing syllabi for my fall classes, and leisurely drinking coffee in the morning. For five weeks, I won’t have to face the frightening insanity of the general public eating lunch unsupervised, unedited. I will stay at home and spoil myself with homemade guacamole and pesto. But I am sure there will be adventures, nonetheless.

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6 thoughts on “Cha-Cha-Changes

  1. A four and half hour class – in the evening? That sounds almost painful. Whew, let’s hope you have a class of motivated students! Otherwise, your main job will be keeping them awake. Hope you get some rest before then.

  2. I very impressed that you stay motivated enough to press your clothes! I would start the school year doing that, and by October I would be too wiped out/lazy and would just wear whatever was the least wrinkly.

  3. oh my stars – you are a one woman band – but that is terrific; you’ll find the stamina. When i was young, i was also a whirlwind, now that circular activity has gone up to my writing brain! hugs and hopes for a day where breezes flow over you, and you just breathe in and out – your students are lucky

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