Well, the glory of Christmas Break has come to an end, and it’s back to the grind this morning. Due to concerns about The Virus, we’re online for at least this week, and I’ve received word that teachers will be allowed to teach from home for the remainder of the week. That will make the transition back to full-time teaching a tad more endurable, as waking up and rolling over to the computer is much easier than engaging in the hasty rituals of the morning.
Regardless, I’m scrambling a bit this morning, so today’s post will be brief and belated. I’ll cover my trip to Mississippi tomorrow; today, I thought I’d give some general updates as we head into the first fiscal week of 2021:
- This morning we’ll begin covering Romantic music in my Pre-AP Music Appreciation class. The Romantic composers are among my favorites, and I’m excited to cover nineteenth-century European cultural and musical history with my students. Romanticism is a concept so broad is can be almost meaningless, but its core elements are appealing: nationalism; a love of nature and one’s country; the exploration of the spiritual and the unknown; the extremes of emotional intensity (that one is often unpleasant in reality; I should know, I once dated a Latina). As such, I’m eager to discuss Romanticism and Romantic music with my students.
- My birthday was pleasant—a Mexican feast with my parents, brothers, sister-in-law, niece, nephews, cousins, aunt, uncle, and maternal grandparents, followed by cake (peanut butter icing on chocolate) and presents. We were also celebrating a cousin’s January birthday, as well as Christmas with my grandparents, so it was a glorious mix of celebrations. Then it was a short stop in Columbia before heading back to Lamar.
- Speaking of Lamar, I’m running for Lamar Town Council again, I think unopposed. The election is next Tuesday, 12 January 2021, so we’ll see if another surprise write-in candidate usurps me again. It’s a bit intimidating to contemplate representing other people’s interests, but I’m eager to take on the responsibility (should I get elected) and to learn more about local government.
- I’m hoping to dedicate more time in 2021 to walking. I’d started taking long, energetic constitutionals right at the tail-end of my summer vacation in 2020, but quickly dropped the newfound habit once the busy school year began. My tentative plan is to get in walks in the mornings, but I can already see that will be difficult, especially during this frosty time of year—it’s too appealing to stay bundled up in bed. That said, I need to drop some weight, and I love getting in a vigorous, bracing walk in the cold. It really sharpens the mind and enlivens the senses, and walking gives one a chance to see a town up-close.
- One destination I hope to hit up on my (hopefully daily) perambulations is my local library. It’s finally reopened, and I picked up a library card from it right before Christmas began. My local branch is small but well-stocked, and I’m eager to dig into its collection.
That’s it for this self-indulgent Monday morning update. Back to more substantive fare tomorrow.
Happy New Year!
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