6:33 a.m. - August 10, 2004
Having the use of a commute vehicle diminishes the excitement I once derived from teaching here. No more MARC trains, no more Metro, no more Union Station, no more shuttles. Simply a short drive on the beltway and into the faculty parking lot. As grateful I am for the vehicle, it comes across to me as yet another loss and underscores the lesson I am loathe to accept: Change happens. I might as well teach in California than here in D.C. - heat, smog, traffic are all the same, though notably absent is any sort of humidity. But a.c. takes care of that. I prefer, I relish, the different that I had the first three years teaching here. The trains and crowds, timing arrivals to make connections, puttering in the station bookstore, walking to the grocery store and deliberating which products were lighter and thus better for the haul back. The foreign-ness, that's what I enjoy, a shiver of not-the-same propelling me up early in the morning.
Now I hit the snooze button 3, 4 times. I can buy groceries at Giant's on my way back from work. No more waiting on the station platform people-watching, or reading the paper and enjoying the early morning breeze. The quality of my working life is negligible.
I am, however, housed in a more rural (or rural-looking, as things go here) area and I enjoy driving the back country roads beside corn fields and pastures, marvelling at how close such is to the city. I turn the radio up to drown out the sound of a.c. - if ya got it, use it - and drive along, bearing conversations nobody hears.
Do not forget: Afternoon meeting with Barbara. Won't this book ever be done?
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