Got a nice Facebook e-mail yesterday from one of my Roosevelt undergrads: "Hello Professor Mohanraj! I don't know if you remember me. I took your Intro to South Asian Lit Class. It changed my life!" Aw, that's so nice to hear. Although she doesn't actually say whether I changed her life in good ways... She did go on to say she wished she could have taken another class with me, so that's a hopeful sign. :-)
I set my alarm for six, but woke up at 5 -- woke up a few times during the night too. I think I'm just too excited -- this always happens to me on the first day of classes. I'll settle into it. We're critiquing three students this morning -- I read their workshop stories last night, then this morning, am reading the other stories they've written so far. I still need to write up my notes, but I think I know what I want to say, so it should go quickly.
The weather is gorgeous. It's a little warm in the afternoons, but as long as you stay in the shade, even that's okay. And the mornings and evening are just perfect. I'm not sure if I'd actually want to live in San Diego -- I doubt we could afford to live close enough to the ocean to make me happy and possibly make up for what I'd lose culturally in Chicago. Plus, much further from my family -- they'd get mad. But the weather here sure is tempting.
I have an enormous apartment to stay in, normally designed for six students, with three bedrooms, a small living room and kitchen. (Yes, enough beds for a sleepover. :-) I've opened all the windows and a pleasant breeze drifts through the apartment. I work sitting on a couch facing a little balcony, beyond with is a huge, spreading tree with peeling papery bark and narrow grey-green leaves. Anyone know what that tree might be?
I have an hour to write up my crits and get dressed, if I want to walk ten minutes to the cafeteria for a real breakfast. Or I could stay in my room, eat tea and toast, and have two hours before class. We'll see how the crit notes go.