I have to drive a carpool (my kids and three others) into school this morning.
I still have a nasty cold and would much rather stay under the covers.
The old van I share? It has no heat. And the last I looked, the ice scraper was broken.
I used an old broom instead of a scraper and found a bent shovel to clear the driveway. The kids got to school on time and for a little while, the snow was still tranquil, clean, white. Until the rain came. Drizzly rain that spotted up my glasses and melted the snow in the streets and caused huge puddles to push up against the curb.
But, in spite of the hassles, it was worth it to get out into the world. Today I taught my first Introduction to Fiction class at Emerson College. I asked my students to share a story about themselves– some tidbit that most people might not know. A young woman from California talked about her first snowfall and the discovery that snow can be slippery. Another talked about jumping off cliffs as a way to get over her fear of heights. There was a tale of a teddy bear and an online romance, of surviving an earthquake and learning to read.
It wasn’t hard to see that these students were full of stories and ready to tell them, ready to read and to write and then to write some more. For many they will experience a workshop– the chance to share their work and get feedback from other writers– for the very first time.
I remember what it felt like to wear that coat of anticipation, of excitement, when I returned to school to study writing. Like a fresh dusting of snow on all my gray branches.