It's the end of my first year as a college student, and I've been spending the nine days between the close of spring term and the beginning of summer session (yes, summer session) working and reading and sleeping. In the mornings I mend books and process periodicals and newspapers. In the afternoons I rotate through my six books: shall I read Perelandra or Articulating Reasons or In This House of Brede or Being and Time or Reading Like A Writer or The Thirteenth Tale first? Lavender Girl always votes for Tale (we're reading this one together), I try to get through all of them (but have spent most of the last three days with Articulating Reasons). My philosophy advisor gave me a list of twenty books to read this summer. Twenty books, and four hefty essays written by colleagues. Do you have any idea how long it takes to read a philosophy book? It is important to get started--to keep on keeping on.
Every day now, a box of books has arrived in the mail. For me. I pick them up at the mailbox on the top of the hill when I drive home from work. Then I open the boxes and stack the books on my dresser. I don't want to put them away yet. I just want to look at them, admire their (mostly) unbent spines and clean pages and beguiling titles.
Next Monday, while the rest of the world is still on holiday, I'll head back to the classroom for another six weeks. Four weeks of math and six of history. And after that, I'll be working nearly full time at the library until the end of September.
"When are you going to rest?" someone asked me.
"I don't know," I said.
But I suspect that somewhere in there I'll find some moments to myself. It's going to be a long, wonderful summer.