Monday, August 16, 2010


I got back to Boise around midnight on Saturday night, tired, footsore, with heavy suitcases. Waited a long time at baggage claim, and of course hyper-efficient Boise Airport did not list our flight on the baggage claim marquee. So I had to wander up and down to each carousel, looking for my suitcase. Finally found it on the Chicago/Minneapolis one. Guess our flight from Denver was so small it didn't rate its own carousel. The plane was smaller than an Embrauer jet. Not sure what kind it was.

Sunday was a lot of laundry, unpacking, cleaning, and re-acquainting myself with the garden. Ken managed to fill nearly five quart bags of raspberries to freeze, and there are still more coming. The tomatoes are starting to ripen. We've eaten at least five or six in the last two days. There are six more on the counter, and more on the way that aren't quite red enough yet. So far its only been the Parks Colossal and Legend that have got ripe. There is fruit set on some of the other plants, but I can't tell which kind they are yet.

The chickens are lots bigger. We moved the chicks onto the grass today, still in their smaller pen. They're much more aggressive than any chickens we've had so far. It's hard to be sure this early, but I think at least one or two are roosters.

The survivor rooster got big!! He has a magnificent comb and he's so tall! He's found his crow at last, so he wakes us up around 5:30 am every morning (sigh!). I hope he'll be a tasty dinner at least, to make up for all the noise. :)

It was a great two weeks at TAC. My classmates were good people. I hope we'll all become teachers! We're supposed to hear in about two weeks. Exam day dragged for me, being last in the line-up. But I got to see everyone come out feeling pretty good about how they did, and word was the examiners were treating them kindly. So that was encouraging.

I had practiced teaching my lesson at least three times by the time 3:50pm rolled around. I wanted to be sure I didn't forget essential elements of the step practice or formation practice that led into the dance. I tend to do that when I'm nervous. They expect more detail than I'm used to doing, so it felt like there was a lot to remember. But I learned a lot that I want to bring into my teaching at home, even if I don't make such detailed lesson plans every week.

I got all the way through everything I had planned and was about to have them dance through the last 16 bars, when the examiners stopped me and said I was running out of time, so I should just have them dance it through. I briefed it and they did it. And it turned out well! No super-mistakes.
I'm thinking when our class starts up again in September I'll teach them my exam lesson, so they can see what it was like.

On Friday we were free to do whatever. So Isobel, Pat, Hisako, Lisa, Irene, and I all went to St. Jacobs, a little town north of Waterloo that was originally settled by German Lutherans. It's now a shopping mecca. Still a small town, with older brick buildings on the main street, but lots of fun, local businesses selling candy, clothing, shoes, home stuff, etc. We had a very nice lunch at Benjamin's, then headed for the stores. Isobel found some great dresses. I tried on some things but didn't buy. The one store where I might have bought something, a natural stone jewelry shop, was closed for lunch. Though I did get some fresh Turkish Delight at the candy store. Then on the way home they dropped me off at the Chapters bookstore. I got a book and some magazines for the trip home and walked the five blocks back to our residence.

My right knee got up to its usual tricks within a few days of getting there, so I wore an elastic brace in class. It doesn't do much to stop it hurting, but at least the swelling stays down. About four days into the course the arch of my left foot started hurting. I think I strained some of the muscles there. So I wore a foot/ankle elastic brace for the rest of the time. It helped enough that I could dance normally in the exam.

But Saturday morning I went to the Advanced Technique class Alan Twhigg taught, just to relax, and I had to stop after the first dance. It hurt so much I couldn't spring on that foot. Dancing stopped being fun, so I went back to my room and finished packing. I hope it's just a strain and I'll be ok in a few weeks. I'm going to find a different elastic support to wear. The ankle one doesn't have a very big band around the foot.

Back at work today, with lots to do. Bills to pay, chores to catch up on. But it's nice to be home.

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