I've spent the last few weeks in mourning for the dying summer, savoring every last moment of peace and quiet on campus, gazing at my uncluttered calendar, and generally dreading the day when it would all end.
Today as I was walking home after a three-hour workshop and a two-and-a-half hour meeting, I caught up with a group of Honors students who are on campus a few days early to undergo training as residential mentors. Now I flatter myself that I'm a well-liked professor and that students are comfortable around me. (Students past and present, now's your time to disabuse me of my illusions.)
Falling into a conversation with the eight or nine students was effortless. And when I broke off from the group because their route and mine diverged, I was surprised to find myself energized. I felt as if I'd been plugged into the wall after sitting on standby.
Maybe the students coming back and my life getting more hectic has an upside, I realized. Am I fully alive when they aren't around?