Happy September

As is so often the case with big tasks, I find that if I can break them up I can finally make real and good progress. It takes a few days of wheel spinning to remember that each time. You could say it is a shortcoming. An oversight. A stubbornness. I think of it as part of the process.

So it was that I laid out a plan to have the syllabi and material for two classes all squared away by Monday. The other, I’ll wrap up on Tuesday. And then, finally, I can think about what to do with an actual class. (Step one, haircut.)

Circumstances beyond anyone’s control gave me a late start with some of the prep. My new colleagues have been incredibly helpful with mitigated a lot of that, but, still, there’s a lot to do. Taking it on in smaller chunks gets it done, though, every time.

I have three notebooks, two piles of paper, three separate browsers, multiple tabs in each and, now, gobs of Google Drive links. There’s a lot to work through.

And so I did, until almost 6 p.m. on the Friday of a three-day weekend. Then I went for a swim.

Two days after a 2,650 yards night swim, I was at it again.

It takes about 400 yards for my shoulders to warm up. After they stop complaining and until I stop, I go through stretches where my form is bad and then my form feels extraordinarily good. There are moments where I’m breathing on each stroke, hard and strong, a puffing locomotive. And then there are these wild moments where I swim a few short laps with the most relaxed breathing possible. It never lasts, that calmness, that efficiency, but the way it all changes amuses me, and probably says a lot about my inconsistency as a swimmer.

At precisely the moment where I reached Wednesday’s 2,650-yard distance, my arms started complaining again, this time from fatigue. That’s a mile-and-a-half, so being tired was understandable, but I kept on swimming for a while longer, until I reached this swim’s little goal. Taking on the bigger thing in smaller chunks: a good approach for September.

I swam 3,080 yards this evening.

I do not know what is happening.

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