Nearly a month went by without any new posts, despite my recent statements about blogging in earnest. I found that teaching writing classes not only involved lots of time grading papers but also focused my interest on writing. I'm actually writing a lot in various journals and notebooks, but was not focusing in the short run on material I wanted to post here. Finally, in the month of July, I managed to resume my average of one post per day for the month. I plan to surpass that volume from here on out. What I post here, combined with my daily writing in journals, is mostly fine-tuning what I hope to publish in a memoir about my experiences in education as student, parent, teacher, supporter and critic.
Meanwhile, I am still available for guiding local nature hikes. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about rates and parameters of time, distance, and personal needs regarding matters of health and fitness.
I have been teaching since 1965 and have recently joined the English Department as an Associate Faculty member at Feather River College. Recently taught Nature Literature in America and am currently teaching Interpersonal Communication and Basic Reading and Writing.
I've had trouble lately getting sufficiently inspired by my observations of nature to post upbeat descriptions of what I see. In fact, I was on the brink of writing something about the President and his team of destroyers. My friend in southern California who writes a blog called "The Way I See It," almost always describes what he finds to be beautiful - wildflowers, cultivated flowers, tree bark, the ocean, etc., - but during the past few months he has felt compelled to share how distraught he is over our current political situation. We share the perception that the president is a dangerous buffoon and is in the process of destroying much of what we consider beautiful, not to mention necessary for our continued survival as a species. But, what saved me from writing about this sort of thing was a dead chipmunk on my front lawn. At first glance, I saw the red underside of the tail and the white belly and thought it was a Douglas Squirrel (AKA Chickaree), but when I tipped it over, I saw the stripes on the face which made it a chipmunk. It's been a number of years since my taxonomic interest was focused on distinguishing among our many species of chipmunks, but I still enjoy a close-up view of most any wild mammal. This one had cheeks full - probably acorns - and was rather wet and dark looking, so I couldn't match it with any of the chipmunk pictures in my field guides. I'm just glad it was there to take my mind off Trump.
Just a few yards away from this unfortunate chipmunk is a fresh pile of dirt pushed up by a gopher. I'm hoping to trick it into showing itself some sunny afternoon - like maybe tomorrow. After I get a photo or two, I'll wish it well, then maybe get a video clip of it covering its hole.