Friday, September 10, 2010

Week's End, Re-charging . . .

Wow! That was a busy, busy week. The academic workplace demands such a change of energy to move from research, reading, and coursework prep into active teaching mode. And the beginning of term, creating a positive and productive classroom dynamic among 30 or so hesitant yet eager new students, is especially adrenaline-dependent. Learning the names of 90 students, introducing course goals credibly and effectively, asserting expectations clearly, and, above all, getting a lively discussion going and motivating reading and writing as quickly as possible among students who don't know each other. My social energy depleted by the time I get home, I'm so grateful that newly-retired Pater, in my weekday domestic space for the first time in many, many years, understands. Rather than expecting (or trying to initiate) a lively conversation when I step inside the door, he merely kisses me and gestures to dinner ready on the stove. This could work, this husband-at-home arrangement I so worried about . . .

He's been working on a few projects in the garden -- perhaps I'll feature those later -- but this week, all I've done out there is admire the last of the summer colour and the emergence of the richer fall tones. Top to bottom here: Pheasant Berry (Leycesteria formosa) berries (also commonly known as Himalayan Honeysuckle); then the Hardy Fuschia, a survivor from an original garden on this property, decades old; and finally, the lovely climbing rose, Awakening. This last is a sport of the much-acclaimed New Dawn; it can be difficult to find, but I lucked into it about ten years ago at the Old Rose Nursery on Hornby Island and I see it listed still in their catalogue.

As sumptuously pink and petalled as it is, it boasts a rich fragrance as well (like Hostess, I wouldn't have a rose that didn't!)
The gardens, a husband chef, a nap or two, a Battlestar Gallactica DVD, and I'll be powered up for week two. I'll be back in this space over the weekend -- a few more garden photos, some movie notes, and the last installment of my portrait essay. Meanwhile, though, how are you powering-up, re-charging after your own busy weeks?


  1. The thought of Pater giving you a kiss, and just pointing to food, brings happy tears to my eyes. Despite my particular history, I love other people's happy outcomes. Particularly someone as good-hearted as you. Have a wonderful weekend.

  2. I'm also glad your new domestic arrangement seems to be working out so well.

    That rose is fabulous!!! I hope to spend some quiet time in the yard this weekend. Fingers crossed...

  3. Gardening is my way of re-charging the batteries, though if I spent less time planning and more time doing, I would be better off.
    Glad to hear the transition into being a half retired couple is going well!

  4. How I envy you a husband who can cook. I was hoping to breathe a sigh of relief on Friday night after a ridiculously hectic week, then I looked at what the weekend held and realised it wasn't over ... I'm hoping I can find a day during the work week next week to bunk off to my garden for a few hours and finally regroup!

  5. I love your Himalayan honeysuckle...I have 2 as well and the New Dawn rose is beautiful...that specimen looks very hardy despite your comment about the difficulty of cultivation.

    Hope that you have a restful weekend.

    I plan to do a lot of R&R
    I'll need to memorize and recognize 410 students!

    Glad to hear pater is having fun in the kitchen.

  6. LPC: So sweet, thank you!
    Pseu: So far, so good . . . Hope you get into your garden soon -- it's a lovely spot.
    Cybill: That's the difficult tug with gardens, isn't it? At the table, planning, or in the dirt, digging . . .
    Tiffany: It has its drawbacks, to which my muffintop can attest, but I'm pretty lucky in having a resident chef! I do hope you manage some garden time soon.
    Hostess: 410! That's a challenge! I presume you'll know some of these from previous years?
    What I find tough is learning 90-120 names in September, using them over 13 weeks, only to begin again in January with a completely different set of the same numbers. Very little carryover at all.

    This rose, by the way, is Awakening -- New Dawn is the parent. And it's very easy to cultivate -- the difficulty is simply in finding it. Worth the effort, absolutely.


I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we? I apologize, though, for the temporary necessity of the Word Verification -- spam comments have been tiresomely numerous lately, and I'm hoping to break that pattern.

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