I left Nebraska a week ago, drove Up North, and I'm spending the summer at the Cabin, my grandparents' house (though nobody lives there permanently right now), and what's a better environment for a place writer and teacher to plan new classes, read and write for comps, and just generally decompress from two intense PhD years? Not much. Wake up to loons, spend days on the couch in your pajama pants with a pot of tea at your elbow, watching the leaves in the breeze off the lake, watching the lake itself until the leaves fill in the view. Already I feel about fifty pounds lighter. Stress is heavy. And what's weird is that there isn't internet at the Cabin (always been a proper noun in our family) and I'm not missing it. A trip once or twice a week into town for groceries and stuff, that'll be enough to check my internet.
Right now, I'm at the library for my internet, and my email inbox has delivered my fall teaching assignment! I'm scheduled to teach Eng. 180, "Introduction to Literature," and Eng. 151H, an Honors section of "Rhetoric as Argument." Except for having no blessed idea what I'm going to do for that 151, I'm pretty darned excited about the 180. I've been messing with my "Scene of the Crime" syllabus as I've been enjoying the couch--and I read Erik Larson's Devil in the White City in two days, then read Sarah Vowell's Assassination Vacation in one day. I was going to put Larson on the syllabus, but I think Vowell's going to be a much more interesting choice. For one, she's freaking hilarious.
I'm starting pages for these classes, so if you're curious about how they're evolving, check them out!