Sunday, March 29, 2009

Early spring thoughts

Our two-week spring break is almost over. Classes start tomorrow, although this doesn't really apply to me, since I'm on sabbatical spring term. (More about that later.)

I've realized that there are a bunch of things I associate with spring break. The most obvious is lots of grading and evaluation writing. This is true for any period right after a term, but it seems especially daunting after winter term, because there are only two weeks before classes start up again. Also, I think I've always taught two classes winter term, so I always have had a lot of evaluations to write.

But in addition to this, there's something distinctive that sticks in my memory about the last two weeks in March. The light is brighter, but it's still cold. I resume running outside, and enjoy the air, even though it's a little colder than I want it to be. The trails are still wet, and often snowy, so I run on gravelly asphalt. A few years ago I tripped while running and cut up my knees and one of my hands. Piles of snow defy the odds and eventually melt.

There is a big rainstorm right now, which is actually quite wonderful. For although it's cold and wet and miserable outside right now, the rain is needed to help melt snow and wash away dirt and grime. When it finally stops I expect the world to look pleasant and cleansed. Flowers and leaves are still a long ways off. But at least the rain will get rid of some of the gritty snow.

I've not given up on this blog entirely. With some more flexible time coming up on my sabbatical I suspect I'll be able to go back to writing at least semi-regularly. I'm also considering retiring this blog and starting a new one. Perhaps a different name/theme/look/whatever will jump start my writing.