In a few hours I’ll be getting out of The Golden Roast and walking back up the hill toward campus, into McClung Tower, into my first class of graduate school.

Yesterday was my first class shadowing as a TA, and I was amazed at the difference a few years makes … all these people were younger and more nervous than I was, by a lot.  A way lot.  Sitting at the front edge of the class and waving as Dr Sheffield introduced me and chuckling conspiratorially when she referenced “evil English professors” and “evil TA’s,” a friendly glance in my direction, I suddenly realized that I was at least five inches taller than any of them.  This is not ego, I hope; realizing that I am part of the authority structure on this campus is reassuring, confidence-inspiring.  I have things to say.  I’m approaching this teaching thing with almost a new mind, almost a new body of courage.

And the teaching was the hugely frightening thing — going to my own classes, today and tomorrow, are only exciting.  Of course the workload will fall in a great crash on my shoulders, if not today at 1240, then tomorrow at 905.  And that is ok.  How mysteriously my wordless panics of last week and weekend have vanished.  How affably I hear of 700 – 1200 pages of material to read each week, how equably I hear of withering workshops.

Someday I’ll figure out how to balance my emotional life.  This means maybe not always letting myself anticipate things to intensely, and leaning on other people to judge whether my anticipations are logical at all.  I know Marshall will appreciate this a lot.  And really, so will I.  I say this all the time … but god, I can’t wait to grow up.

In other news, I’m riding the bus!  Finally.  I have always wanted to do this, but the KAT lines have never been convenient for me in the least.  For the next two years, though, I will need to come in to campus every day of the work-week and positively refuse to buy a “parking pass” which would really only allow me to park on campus sometimes, when I can find a spot, when looking for one hasn’t already made me twenty-five minutes late to class.  It’s $162 for heaven’s sake.  $50 for a semester-long unlimited KAT pass, picking up 0.7 miles from my house and dropping a couple minutes’ walk from Hodges — no complaints here.

In the mornings I face eastward on the bus.  When we go lumbering over the James White Pkwy bridge, I see the early sun young and bright on the river, cirrus and swallows, for the four long seconds of crossing.