Friday, October 21, 2011

There's a time for change

Prague Sunset

Fall is always a time for change for me.  I find myself having the Brady Bunch song, Time for Change stuck in my head lately.  So, I thought there was no better time then to write a fall blog post and talk about some changes.

Having worked in education for a number of years now, fall always marks new beginnings.  And while my first day of school excitement is different from the children's excitement, I do get excited for the new opportunities that await during this time of year.

The leaves are just beginning to change here and while the weather has mostly been phenomenal, we've also had some rainy/dreary days foreshawdowing winter a little.  Its those days that make me take extra care to get out and enjoy those sunny, beautiful days we do have, as I know soon, we'll only have daylight for about 9 hours and the cold and snow will be everywhere.  However, with that cold and snow comes the Christmas Markets, mulled wine, and many lights.  There's always something new.

Just today as I was coming home from my class, I crossed the river, saw the Prague Castle and the view of the river and bridges, and it literally took my breathe away.  I didn't believe that a year into living here, I'd still love this city so much, but it's true.  Somethings change; somethings stay the same.

I've been very lucky to have many visitors this spring, summer, and fall and I figured I have toured Prague about 8 times from May through October.  Each time I learn something new and we never get to see everything there is to see, however its always fun for me to see the city through new eyes.

During the last two weeks I had two very interesting visitors.  All my visitors have been incredibly interesting, but these two visitors were "blasts from the past."  The first was a former Resident Assistant (RA) that I worked with at the University of Wyoming in 2006-2007.  We kept in touch via facebook since, but our lives went in different directions.  She happened to take a European adventure this fall and made Prague one of her stops partly because of all the posts and pictures I have made.  It was a treat to take her and her mom to one of my favorite (not at all touristy) restaurants and just talk.  We talked in a way that wasn't possible when I was her boss, and we had amazing conversations about life, adventure, travel, and the world.  It was a treat to get to know this wonderful former student and now friend in a new way.

And just this week, my high school band director and his wife were in Prague.  I figured out I hadn't seen them since my sister's wedding 10 years ago, so we too had much to catch up on.  We had a wonderful time tasting Czech food and beers, exploring the city, and seeing the Prague Symphony perform.  It was all a bit surreal, but wonderful.  It was amazing to hear their impressions of the city, Czech culture and food.  It was also fun to see their pictures (mostly of food, beer, and of the concert halls they visited) which were very similar to the types of photos I like to take when traveling.  It was incredible to share my experiences with a former teacher and mentor, and to become friends as an adult.  I feel incredibly grateful for that opportunity.

So there have already been a lot of changes occurring in my life, and I sense more are coming.  Things always seem clearer in the fall to me.  I have turned a bit inward this fall and am thinking about changes I want to make for myself.  I've recommitted to working out more regularly and eating healthy.  I even hired a personal trainer, which I'm certain will be a post topic soon.  She speaks no English, so our sessions are entertaining.  I've noticed over the past months, I've put my goals as a lower priority, and it's time to change that.  I've also set a new goal of shedding 40 pounds in the next 9 months.  I decided to make this a more public goal, as I need encouragement and support.  Its not easy for me to ask for that help or to be this open about this type of goal, but I think its just what I need to make it happen.  This physical goal is just one more change on my proverbial plate these days.  It represents all these other changes that have occurred in my life, and its my time to make myself a priority.
A quote from the John Lennon memorial wall in Prague

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