(mostly) daily photoblog

Archive for August, 2010

My summer is ending.

I have to go to work tomorrow.  I’m not sure I’m excited about this.  In fact, I’m even a little bit miffed.  I don’t know where the last eight weeks have gone.  A major perk in teaching is the summer holidays.  I’m happy that I spent so much time with my wife and children.  I’m a bit off-put by the lack of work I did this summer and I feel less than fully organized.  I’ve two days of training student leaders and then a ninth grade orientation on Wednesday.  I’m hoping that by then I’ll feel like everything’s back to normal, but I’ve got a bad case of doubt right now.

I guess I’ll just have to live on the memories of the Oregon coast.

A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit.

Trust the Greeks (ancient ones, that is) to come up with brilliant and beautiful metaphors.  As I think about going back to school in a week and a half, I am reminding myself that I am “planting trees” through my students.  That I will not sit in the “shade” of those trees has never bothered me.  When I started teaching I was told by many older, more experienced teachers that teaching was rewarding, but that information was always offered with a sort of wry look and a verbal irony that belied the cynicism that takes many teachers who’ve lost their passion.

Along the way I’ve met a great number of other teachers, not all of them teaching in a school, who’ve reminded me why I went into teaching in the first place.  I teach because I love teaching, but more than that, I enjoy watching other people learn.  I like that moment when I can practically see the neurons firing, the synapses connecting for that brief second when learning happens.  The “ah-ha!” moment.

I teach students, not a subject.  And I’ve got a job to do.

Wishing for warmth on a rainy Friday.

It’s raining outside my window and even though the meteorologists are telling me on two separate morning shows that later this afternoon things are going to clear up, I’m left wishing for a nice warm feeling.  To that end, I’m posting a photo of Cannon Beach from our family trip to Oregon.  Now, if I just stare at all the people on the beach and the warm Oregon Coast sand, maybe I’ll warm up.

If a rolling stone gathers no moss, what does a rock do that is buried in sand?

While I visited Garry Point Park, in Steveston, BC, I spent a large portion of the day on the beach.  I was quite fascinated by the small rivulets, or their trails, that ran away from this rock.

I was also happy with the bokeh of the lens I just bought.  It’s a 70-210mm Tokina, with the largest aperture of f3.5.  So far I’m just playing with it, but it seems pretty good.  What do you think?

“As pretty as an airport…”

Douglas Adams, in The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul, wrote, “It can hardly be a coincidence that no language on earth has ever produced the expression “As pretty as an airport.” Airports are ugly. Some are very ugly. Some attain a degree of ugliness that can only be the result of a special effort. This ugliness arises because airports are full of people who are tired, cross, and have just discovered that their luggage has landed in Murmansk (Murmansk airport is the only exception of this otherwise infallible rule), and architects have on the whole tried to reflect this in their designs.”

I think I’ll leave it at that.