Saturday, September 22, 2007

Fall/Summer Interface

Such a lovely time of year -- all that buttery late afternoon sunshine and just the first hints of fall color. We're swimming in the pool, probably for the last time this year, to celebrate a last burst of warmth up from the South. (We don't use the propane heater that much, but we love it when we do...) At the same time, long sleeves are back in fashion, and the duvet at the foot of the bed is now up around our hips at night. I really do love these first days of autumn...

Otherwise, it's just a very busy time. Starman's immigration interview is Tuesday, down in Philadelphia. I'm finishing a motion for summary judgment; my first since leaving large law firm practice. (What can I say? I think it's well done, but then I thought the last one I did was well done, and the supervising partner had another opinion entirely. Now that I've left large law firm practice, who knows whether it's any good? One thing's for certain though -- it's going to be better than what the opposing attorney will do. I don't believe I'm complimenting myself when I say that...) And then it's off with the lawyer hat and back to the bridezilla diadem as I travel with Coffee Jones to the U.K. for a spot of wedding planning. In the odd bits of free time, I quilt or practice my burgeoning bridge-playing skills.

The odd thing about this time is that I'm getting all this done. Maybe not perfectly, but certainly without the sort of trauma I specialized in years before. I was the sort of procrastinator for whom the expression "deer in the headlights" was coined: paralyzed until it was almost too late, then a mad dash for the other side of the road! My research for the legal brief took me back to my law school library, which stirred up a lot of mostly pleasant memories. I chatted (well, whispered) briefly with a nice 1L in the library, and passed along to him the best advice I got as a 1L: whatever got you through college would get you through law school. The thing I didn't tell him, though, was that I hadn't taken that advice at first. I thought I would study "the right way" meaning I outlined the cases, and ended up with the worst grades I got in three years. After that disaster, I went back to the way I'd studied in college (which had been 15 years earlier, incidentally): wait until the night before the exam and panic. I got nearly perfect grades the second semester. That makes no sense, but it's true. "Trauma studying," it's called.

So why am I now relatively more disciplined and structured? No clue. I've set my own deadlines for the motion, instinctively followed up on the wedding planning, and turned naturally from one task to another as time and temperament has permitted. Who's running this life, because it doesn't feel like any previous version of me I can recall! The only aspect of this that new & improved Magdalen that is reassuringly familiar is the stuff I am not doing. Were the bathrooms cleaned this weekend? Nope. Have I been exercising regularly? Not so much. Are there issues of The New Yorker piling up? You betcha. So I'm not perfect, or anything repulsive like that. I'm multitasking, not alltasking.

Oh, it'll die down, although I rather think it won't go away entirely. I know these things are cyclical, and nothing lasts forever. But while it lasts, I'm getting a lot of sewing done! Because the revelation of this autumn has been how much I want to quilt. And for anyone who knew me two years ago, that is a big change. I hope that doesn't change with the seasons!