Yes, Virginia, there is more room in life than merely work (& grading papers).
[Is that spoken like a teacher or what?!]
Sad but true... I had forgotten about that "more to life" thing. I didn't feel like I had the luxury of slowing down right now. For good reason--but still!
So how does one step "away from the dark side" and "out from under the rock?" By taking part in a well-timed grade-level eco-adventure field trip with 36 kids. What makes it an eco-adventure? We all went to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation Merrill Center where we canoed, seined, and investigated the elements of "green" building-ness of the center. We spent the afternoon out on The Margarite, an educational vessel and an old friend (as I've ridden on her time and time again). On it, we pulled up some oysters, checked out bay life by boat-ride binoculars, and did a little fishing to determine the biodiversity of the bay. It reminded me of my "eco-days" at a dear little place called Eagle Cove School, and my memories of the "best field trip ever!
What this trip also reminded me is how we can get lost in the minutia of everyday life. Getting all those papers graded, getting all that laundry done. All the while, losing a whole lot of yourself in the process. From the vantage point of the inside of a canoe, seeing the still water, with a blue heron flying overhead, with a backdrop of red and rust-colored leaves peppering the trees--you have that "ah ha!" moment of remembrance. That's what I needed.
Add in the reminder of days gone by of "my old (less harried) self," I was struck by how much I missed me.
Proving the point that despite doing the good job of teaching the youth of America, you have to do the self-persevering thing. It's what they tell you on the plane while going through the pre-flight reminders: put your own life mask on first. This 3 day weekend ahead, I intend to do just that!
Pictures from my camera!