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The First Day of Autumn is Saturday, September 22nd…

August 2, 2012

… and I can’t wait.

I’ve been avoiding this little web-log for a while, as I have been the absolute worst version of myself for the past week. (Admittedly, this could be more of a “summer” than a “week” thing.) I’ve felt like an over-tired, hot, sticky-haired seven year old girl, starting each day with enthusiasm and rapidly wilting into despair and frustration with the first unexpected challenge. Said challenges include: road construction outside our bedroom window, jerks who don’t stop for pedestrians (this extends, sadly, to Chicago cops, and it also reflects the incredible extent to which I was spoiled in SeattleThePromisedLandofPedestrians); the general insecurity of our family finances; the flatness of Chicago; and any number of petty, relatively-meaningless glitches that only matter when one is lonely and hot.

So! I’m writing today because this emphasis on petty, relatively-meaningless glitches has become habitual and I want out.

Here is some good news:

  • In exactly 52 days it will be fall. And everyone knows that fall is delicious.
  • My husband and I submitted an application to adopt a shelter puppy, and it was approved! I don’t know when we’ll add a little Pups Mcgee to our home, but I can’t wait. Cat McGee, in the meantime, remains her adorable, festive self. Here she is, begrudgingly helping us send my sister a happy birthday message:
  • The Olympics are taking place. That’s always nice.
  • The Affordable Care Act went into effect yesterday. And while this is a web-log about running, I think it’s worth noting- and celebrating!- how great it is that insurance companies can no longer deny benefits to kids with pre-existing conditions, and they now have to pay for an annual well-woman check up, and increased counseling and support will be available to victims of domestic violence  and new moms (among other things). There’s a lot of bullshit in this nation, and I am happy to support -with my voice, taxes, etc.- a measure that extends a slightly more just and compassionate hand to my neighbors and me.
  •  I played hooky with my husband yesterday and visited Starved Rock State Park. It was beautiful, and after a long hike we sat in the shade and ate cold fried chicken. Try and top that. I can’t.
  • Every Wednesday night, I teach GED Math. It’s a tough gig for someone who’s not really great at math, and also tough because my students hail from Romania, Chicago, Pakistan, Atlanta, Iraq, and also, sometimes, from prison. They have different language and math abilities, and very different levels of self-confidence, and together they form the most supportive, enthusiastic, ready-to-laugh group of people you can imagine. I can’t believe how lucky  I am to spend time with them each week.
  • The park near our house doesn’t suck- in fact, it’s very beautiful- and it also has a free Olympic-sized pool. So a couple days ago I swam slow laps around the overly-cologned eastern European men who drifted slowly from one side of the pool to the other. It wasn’t easy at first: you can smell that cologne under water, and that  makes it really hard to focus, let alone breathe. To rest, I leaned against the side of the pool next to so many tanned, gold-chain-wearing old men and watched the boys jump off the low dive. They were like skinny birds, flying and flailing into the blue water. And in a square sea of strangers, I actually didn’t feel anonymous. I was another kid, enjoying the water and light.

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One Comment
  1. Anne permalink

    omfg those pictures of alices are SO CUTE!!!!!
    i love them.
    and i am so excited to come visit you when you have a puppy!
    and also: you could smell the cologne under water??? that is so gross.
    and also i totally feel your pain – i hear jackhammers till midnight basically every night 😦

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