Today was definitely one of those days when I was quite happy to teach online instead of in the classroom every day.
The alarm went off at 6:15am. I opened my door and found my father-in-law on the couch in the lounge reading the day’s news on his iPad. He had already made coffee, so I poured myself a cup and sat on the chair in the lounge to check email. We chatted for a bit, and soon my husband was also up, getting coffee, and heading to the shower.
Half an hour later, they were in the car and on their way to the golf course in Narangba. My mother-in-law had gotten up by then, and she and I had moved from the lounge to the patio. We sat in our chairs drinking coffee for the next three hours until she headed upstairs to make a pot of soup for the week and I headed to the gym for an hour.
When I arrived home, everyone was there sitting around chatting, so I sat at my computer for my online office hours, replied to some emails, and prepped some class material for next week. I then endured lengthy debate about which beach we should visit that afternoon. Once the decision was made, we all got in the car and drove to Bribie Island, about 30 minutes from our house, and spent an hour walking on the beach and enjoying the late afternoon.
On days like today, I consider what my day in Iowa would have looked like. I would have been up early to teach at the high school at 8 and then to campus to teach a couple classes. I might have had a meeting or two, a couple coffee chats with friends and colleagues, and then home to get ready for Ash Wednesday church. I would have worn heels and warm tights, a skirt and a top, a winter coat and mittens. I would have seen friends and students face to face. I would have held a white board marker and eraser, brought up documents or pages on the screen at the front of the room, and entered in my daily attendance record. I would have talked about the chance that the weather would be warming up soon and that winter would soon be over with nearly everyone I would encounter.
But instead I got coffee and family and a workout and a walk on the beach. But dear friends I’ve left behind, not even the beach is good enough to serve as a substitute for you.