Saturday, July 19, 2003

07/19/03: Late last week I decided to take a walk on my lunch hour. And then I decided to do it every day. Two days into it I discovered a creek and trail directly behind my office complex. It has been absolutely beautiful weather, what a wonderful summer. Even though the creek itself is small, cloudy and runs next to the sewage treatment plant, the greenery surrounding the water is literally a breath of fresh air. I have been amazed to find that during that 30 or 40 minutes, my mind just is free. Nothing is weighing on me, I don't feel stress about work or life or whatever, I'm just there in the moment, listening to whatever CD is in the walkman. (Norah Jones' record is fabulous, by the way.) Yesterday I had my best walk yet--it was all I could do to bring myself back inside, back to work. I just got in the groove, loving the sunshine on my shoulders, listening to Alanis, walking hard and fast like there was no tomorrow.

Yesterday I remembered the time I did a read-aloud for the team. It was at TrailBlazers, after I had started working on the library and going on reading binges. I read them The Giving Tree, because I always loved that book. I got to nearing the end, and I said, okay I have to stop because I'm going to start crying. The team laughed, but I said, no, I'm serious! as a couple tears escaped. Then someone else finished it up for me. There's some kind of deep statement there about friendships and teamwork. Or maybe I'm just too darn mushy. Ha.

Wednesday, July 09, 2003

07/09/03: So I've been official now for about a week, have email and voice mail all set up...very neat. Somehow, though, work got exponentially tougher; I have more piles, bigger piles, and I get all flustered more. The past week or so I've been sick, with my summertime strep/cold thing (made for an excellent holiday weekend, let me tell you), and of course my gravelly voice and coughing fits make phone calls a real treat. I'm doing my best not to take it all too personally, to not get caught up and over-stressed, although it's awfully frustrating to have such a messy desk. I just can't seem to get caught up and organized. But it's fine! Really, it will be fine. Yeah.

So. Welcome to Complacency Land. I am now the official Resident Couch Potato. I don't do anything. Since I bought the tv over the weekend (and got my mom's extra VCR--she's using mine back at her place), I have spent altogether WAY too many hours slumped in Stacey's leather chair, slack-jawed and spaced out in front of that evil box. Sigh.

In other news, I got an email through the AmeriCorps Association about the danger that AmeriCorps is facing in Congress right now. It makes me sick to think about what might happen...but I have put off doing anything about it. I actually started a letter to Email My Elected Representatives, but man...I am so bad at that kind of stuff. It feels to trite and cheesy to say "AmeriCorps changed my life, please do everything you can to keep it running so it can change more lives," but damn, it's the truth. I want to write something profound, provocative, memorable, something that will catch the attention of whatever poor aide has been assigned to read the messages from the masses. You know? More likely, however, I will ramble on, disparately, desparately, trying to get my point across in way too many words.

Speaking of words, I'm working my way through Made in America, by Bill Bryson, and it's freaking awesome. It's like a history of America with a linguistic eye. Truly fascinating. For instance, did you know "Idaho" is a made-up word? They needed a name for the state and someone thought it up to be sort of Indian-sounding. Very weird. And Abner Doubleday had absolutely nothing to do with baseball, that uber-American (but in reality, completely not) pastime. It's exactly the type of book I wish I could have researched or written. I love obscure facts about random stuff that everyone takes for granted.