Saturday, December 8, 2007
Row, Row, Row...Down Stream
The five snap shots above are there to remind me of the full, fascinating and fantastic week and a day I just had. We were coming from the depth of despair with a family member's problems and went to the heights of hope and hilarity in just that brief amount of time. Life is funny that way and it's good to remember that. It can change so quickly if you are open to it, flexible and ready to "keep on...keeping on".
Of course, I couldn't resist snapping the vulture looking down on us in "Club 33" in Disneyland while we ate our sumptuous feast/buffet in that exclusive, upstairs restaurant. We had been invited by some Club 33 Members to the annual "Candlelight Concert" of Xmas music and narrative in the Main Street Square. Mr. Vulture reminded me, as I took pause, of where I had been the previous week with my son. Somehow he and we must "muddle through" these hard times with the hope that healing will eventually come and the "vultures" of death will not win too soon.
I was taken with the beauty all around me at this "Happiest Place on Earth" when I snapped the center piece of peacock feathers at my table and the tiffany dragon fly lamp shade at the "Craftman" Hotel Californian in Downtown Disney. Beautiful images are all around with just the barest notice, if you try.
At the entrance to The California Adventure part of the Park there is this gigantic landscape/mosaic that I also snapped at the urging of my wife. We live in a beautiful state and are so lucky and priveledged to respond to its sights/sites and weather most of the year. We also Soared of California again, our favorite ride.
The concert last Sunday, though very cold for us thin-blooded Californians, was pure joy for me. This is probably the first year that I haven't been associated with a Chorus, Chorale or Choir and sung the traditional carols. I didn't realize how much I missed it. (tears to the eyes) This was a massive group of at least a dozen local choirs (chamber singers, madrigals etc.) plus an orchestra and the Hand Bell Choir from Claremont Congregational (the best, I knew some of the ringers) Then there was the Biblical Nativity Story read by Jane Seymour in her crystal clear English accent. (this time she did no "Dancing With the Stars") What fascinated me most during the whole, hour-long, performance was the American Sign Language Soloist up in front, near us in a spot light. Her movements were so graceful and calming for every spoken and sung word. This also helped me get perspective and forget our troubles for awhile. (it was dark, with spotlights, so no photos)
The next day I was scheduled to work at my favorite Elementary school...as it turned out, all week. Four days in a great 4th grade class and one day in a 2nd. This was the first time I had decided to work/sub (as they call it "Guest Teach") for 5 straight days. Along about the 4th day I had to catch my second wind to stay focused and positive all day. The fifth day was a "rainy-day schedule" but hardly any different. No "stuck in the classroom" all day (recesses) with smelly little bodies. We got our usual breaks and the administration/staff did herculean duty.
It was a joy to be back with my favorite aged kids and explore some of my "pet rubrics" with them. They were shocked and pleasantly surprised at several of them. "Our regular teacher doesn't do it this way." Learning again (finally) became fun and challenging...even the 5, yes, FIVE, tests we had on Friday. We sang alot, played math baseball, did Venn Diagrams of the "!2 Days of Xmas" and the "Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe" etc. We wrote about our dead pets when "Rontu died in Island of the Blue Dolphins". We did Victor Borge Punctuation (sound effects) on our Daily Bites. We had fun...or at least I did. Just before the 5 tests, I taught them my "new versions" of "Row, Row, Row Your Boat":(6 to be exact)
Best that you can find
Is lots of fun
It helps improve
Best that you can pen
Writing words is lots of fun
It makes you feel like
Try so many sorts
Playing games is lots of fun
It helps to make
La Vida es su
Try all that are given
Taking tests (can be) lots of fun
It lets you know
Make school hard and boring
Hating school is not much fun
What's only worse is
So I'm fully ready to continue to flow and row "down stream" and enjoy what time I have left. How about you? RRR
at 8:22 AM