It was a busy three or four days between THATCamp Pedagogy 2011 at Vassar College, homework, work, life – probably just referred to as “the usual” when people ask how it’s going. I took Thursday – my birthday – off from work in an attempt to reduce my over-sized to-do list and it was a productive day overall. Friday, on the other hand, saw a steep decline that began with a lengthy online dialog with a TA over grading errors and ended with a speeding ticket on a New Jersey highway. Some days just work that way…
I had a terrible headache by the time Sunday morning rolled around; likely the result of anxiety and sleep deprivation. I promised myself that I would leave the hotel an hour early that morning so I could walk the gorgeous Vassar campus with my new camera. As I probably should have expected, however, time dwindled. Note to self: if you book a suite with a Jacuzzi in a picturesque locale, plan to leave the textbooks behind – at least the majority of them. The Jacuzzi remained dry and I never even made it out onto the hotel patio to view the passing waterfalls. Epic fail on the R & R front :-\
On a positive note, the Sunday morning weather was perfection and I did take the time to circle the main quad, though I ended up at our morning briefing 20 minutes late. oops! So, a half hour and a few dozen pictures later and my calm had been miraculously restored. I am loving my new Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-HX100V with Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar 30x Optical Zoom Lens and Full HD 1080 Video from Amazon! Put a camera in my hands and the rest of the world just melts away! It’s amazing how that lens can immediately adjust my focus. ;-) It’s not necessarily that I am a great photographer, but becoming one with the camera is like a system reboot for me.
Being a returning adult student probably makes life more challenging. There is always something or someone that requires your immediate attention with probably a line of other somethings directly behind! My advice is to stop and take some time for yourself; even if the world seems like it is spinning out of control. Immerse yourself in something that you love – something that demands 100% of you. The investment of even the briefest encounter – allowing yourself to go into full-on creativity mode – will be time well spent when you return to the task at hand refreshed and filled with renewed enthusiasm.
I guess I have learned something from #CMC11 after all!