Prelude: What I did for my summer vacation

So, the summer is almost here — for Flagler students anyway. I never really appreciated getting out so early for the summer while I was a student here. At least I don’t think I fully appreciated it. Now as I sit here thinking about the long summer ahead and wondering what I’ll be doing with all my free time, I suddenly remember I don’t have any free time.

What happened to all of our free time anyway? I can remember as a kid having what seemed like an endless supply of free time. I don’t remember it gradually tapering off, although I’m sure it did. And one day it was just gone. I think mine starting dwindling somewhere around 1999, but I can’t be sure.

Now, I don’t claim to have a lock on being busy. There are many people in this world whose lives are far more hectic than I could ever claim mine to be. But in the last few weeks, I feel like I have successfully eliminated anything resembling free time from my life.

A couple of students are always telling me, “Why are you getting your masters?” or “You should quit grad school.” The latter is sage-like advice, I’m sure, but it’s not really the most practical suggestion. As much as I enjoy both going to school and working at Flagler, the last couple of weeks have tested my resolve. I can’t imagine how people who have children do it. And I am reminded once again how easy I really have it.

My days consist of working, going for a weekly walk/run with a coworker, possibly going out with friends and the most time consuming activity of all — studying. And when I put it down on paper (er, screen) it really seems even less hectic. The studying part is kind of misleading as well. What my schoolwork really consists of is a mountain of reading and a massive quantity of paper writing. And even after I finish up the two classes I’m taking this semester (my semester doesn’t end until May 9), I will embark on yet another adventure with two spanking new summer classes.

So, as I sit here bemoaning my lack of free time, I remember all those summers as a kid where I whined, “There’s nothing to do!” and I have to suppress a sardonic grin. After all, the cosmic irony of this is hard to deny. Sometimes you get what you ask for.

Yes, oh wise students, I know… “You should quit.” But I’m not a quitter. And besides, what else am I going to do all summer to consume every waking moment that I am not at work?

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