My first classes of the semester went quite well. The students here really are at a higher level, so challenging them will be a particularly fun endeavor. I had only one class in the afternoon on the first day of classes, and yesterday was my bookend day (one at 8, one at 2:30). There was a pretty vicious rain storm on my way in to teach at 8, but my students were surprisingly awake and cheerful. By mid-afternoon, things had cleared up, and my students were buoyed by the nice weather and sunlight. The conversations were very lively, and my students really had a lot of thoughtful and perceptive things to say. It’s going to be a great semester.
My current concern now is trying to learn and remember all of their names. I know that it will come with time, but I know it can make students feel good to be recognized and remembered. A few silly ice-breaker activities should help with that.
I also seem to be coming down with something, which really freaks me out. My benefits switch over (from Spouse’s to my policy) in a mere 6 days, and I’m also pretty broke. This month has been financially tight because of all the things I needed to buy when I got here, plus the fact that I don’t get paid until the middle of next month. (?!) Spouse is paid on the first of the month like most normal salaried people, so it keeps things from getting too awful for me. I’ve borrowed some decongestants from my roommate, and hope to feel better in a day or two.
Another exciting thing is that I’ve linked in with some cool faculty groups on campus. One is a committee looking at the value of the liberal arts in the 21st century, another is a discussion group that discusses psychology and cultural issues. Also, a few young faculty people and I are starting up a dinner group to continue socializing and it gives us a chance to eat at least one decent meal a week without going out to one of New Job Town’s rather pricey restaurants. Our first meeting coincides with Spouse’s visit up here, so that will be a great weekend for me.
For such a small place, there is so much going on. I’ll have no reason to be bored or lonely, and getting work done will be easy. I feel so blessed.