Ah, summer.... that magical time caught someplace between being young and growing up. As educators, we get to live in a world that is continually changing the seasons and the inevitable arrival of summertime. Every year we get to experience the joy of finishing another school year, the first real taste of summertime, and the inevitable feelings that come with those first days of a new school year (again).
My summer got slammed by a left hook from reality and a short jab of 'that's how it is'.
I just finished CASE Plant Science in Iowa with 19 other wonderful instructors and two very good lead teachers. We had a great time, learned a lot and definitely left with some great new skills to apply. This week, we are hosting the NAAE Region III conference in Iowa and I look forward to spending some time with the great teachers from other states; then IAAE convention, then to teach CASE AFNR in Ohio; then the Polk County Fair, then a week to spend some time with family and then my summer Advanced Animal Science Lab and then the ALC at the Iowa State Fair. The day after we finish the state fair - we start school with students. I'm not sure I even caught a glimpse of summer in there. Or at least not the summer some folks think about.
My friend Scott, teaches Math (hey - we can't all be aggies) and lives in San Diego -- where I hear you should go if you love the beach life. He works hard at the pool side / beach life and I'm sometimes very envious of the laid back style that his summer takes on. I'm even more envious as he jabs a little at the working folks (and me) for having to work while he recreates.
But I'm not sure that I would trade my summer for his. Granted, I would love to have some time to just do 'whatever', but I don't think it could be as impactful. I suppose that we all find our own paths thru this maze we call life.
For those who didn't know - a well known broadcaster in Iowa passed away too soon a few weeks ago. Mark Pearson was a friend to agriculture and a charismatic soul who never knew a stranger. I always admired what he did for agriculture and more so, the way that he went about doing it. And busy -- whew - that guy had irons in the fire - and then built a few more fires. For sure a life ended too soon, but one that left a huge legacy for agriculture - probably more than we will ever know.
As I reflect on the time we spend - and where we spend it - this thought comes to mind; Live a little more today, worry a little less about tomorrow, and remember the only thing you take with you is what you leave behind.
Here's hoping your summer is just what you need it to be.
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