1. After a very hot start to the month, August seems to be going out on a somewhat more humane note – mid-70sF for the highs, low-50sF for the lows. Today it rained most of the day. I’m okay with this for summer weather. Now when the highs are in the low-60sF and the lows in the low-40sF, we’ll be gold. Bring on autumn.
2. In keeping with this year’s Summer of Visits theme as well as the “You Know You’re In The Midwest” theme that has been running through my world since the early 90s, my friend Lori came to Chicago on a business trip back in July so Kim and I went down and had dinner with her and then drove back home. We found a nice Cuban place in the Loop and feasted amid the noise and heat of the city. It was lovely to see her – twice in one summer, making a grand total of three times since 1990!
3. Also, UCF friend Natalie and her family stopped in a couple of weeks ago as they were driving through southern Wisconsin. We spent a fine afternoon hanging out and fixing their car (well, her husband fixed the car – I just gave him directions to both of the nearby auto parts stores), and convincing her that her daughter was right and they should in fact go visit The House on the Rock. “It’s an experience,” I told her, neglecting to mention that so is getting hit with a line drive. The next day I got a text from Natalie that said, in its entirety, “OMG,” so I figure an experience was had.
4. Meanwhile Tabitha decided that she would do some visiting of her own. She spent a week or so with her college friend Dustin down in Texas – Dustin’s dad generously donated some of his airline points for the flight – and had a grand time. This was a run-up to the Big Trip to visit her friend Teresa in Spain, which she managed just fine on her own. I dropped her off at the airport and then followed along with the various SnapChat story posts as she and Teresa visited Teresa’s family and friends and various sights and destinations throughout southern Spain. You raise them to be confident and adventurous, and off they go.
5. My online class wound through the rest of the summer like a vague itch that could never quite be satisfied until final grades were posted. It’s the last time I will teach the class in the old software platform, which holds no nostalgia value whatever other than to remind me of just how much of a misery the new software platform that we’re switching to this fall is.
6. Home Campus is slowly being absorbed into the Mother Ship, so more and more of our processes are switching over to their processes. It’s been interesting. I have said “Let me look that up and get back to you” to a great many students this summer.
7. I got to almost none of my planned Big Summer Projects, but to be honest I kind of expected that. There were other priorities. I suppose I’ll have more time this fall to focus on them, which is a silver lining of a sort.
8. Silver linings mostly exist to highlight the cloud, though.
9. Is it my imagination or has the petit-Fascist train wreck of American government sped up this summer? We’ve got concentration camps. We have a Fearless Leader who doesn’t seem to understand the concept of laws, restraints, Constitutions, morality, or decency. We’ve got a loud and vulgar group of minions pouring hatred on all that is decent and humane while actively stomping on anyone who opposes the Dear Leader. It’s going to get a lot uglier before it gets better.
10. I now know from personal experience what it takes to make Nando’s “cheeky.” I shall add this to my CV under “Applicable Skills.”