Sunday, August 23, 2009

The still of the night

I'm 95% settled in my new home for the next year or so. Furniture is assembled and fixed up, my boxes are unpacked and organized, my clothes are in a dresser for the first time in more than a year. All my potted plants are cluttering up the window sills, and hanging in corners of rooms. Pictures of family and friends are unpacked and distributed around my room. I have a bed that requires no inflation, and is more than 6 inches off the ground. My fridge is full of groceries, and fresh office supplies are stocked in my desk.

Tomorrow I begin orientation for graduate school, for my department and for TA training. Tomorrow I'll locate my desk, and get my student ID. Tomorrow I'll start learning my way around campus. Tomorrow, in many ways, is a tangible beginning of graduate school for me. In a little more than a week I'll step into a classroom again as a student, for the first time in over a year. "Transient Theorist" isn't going to be quite so transient anymore.

Probably I should have lots of insights from the last year's worth of experiences, and I should be writing something insightful... But tonight it's just me. All the memories from this last year, and the friendships and the places, are things that won't go away. Right now they're just a part of life, part of the tapestry, even if I haven't interpreted them and catalogued them away in neat boxes. I kept thinking it would be a restful year, a time to take stock of life and it's direction, to pause and sort out future trajectories. But I'm not sure it's possible to catch up on life - it happens so fast, and speeds up like a glorious kaleidoscopic whirling dervish. Maybe I've learned a little better to accept this, to enjoy the journey even without knowing it's meaning or destination, although it's still very unsettling.

Tomorrow comes, and it's just another now, no longer a beginning, just another day joining the rest. It's sure to bring new challenges, and new excitements, and even big changes. Transient Theorist here plans to ride the swells, to give it his best shot, and to enjoy the journey.

I want to sign out and leave you with my song of the evening:

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