Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Surprising Adventures

I had to go for a blood draw this morning at 9 AM and then was planning to go to a lecture at the University of Minnesota at 11:30. Since the two locations were quite close, I packed my bag with work that needed doing. I planned to stop for breakfast in between the two events. However, when I got to the restaurant, I found out it was in the process of being turned into a tea house. So I headed for a coffee shop that I certain to still be there.

It was, I got my coffee and walked to a back room hoping it would be more quiet. I found a table and started to read. I looked up and there was a photo of a blue and yellow 2nd class Polish train car. There was a picture from L'Viv. There was a picture from Zakopane. Through no planning on my part at all I had landed right where a travel photographer had located Polish and Ukrainian photos! How nice to see these familiar images.

I also enjoyed watching a native-born Minnesota young man tutoring an African-born student. He would explain, demonstrate with his hands, do everything he could to get the idea across. Meanwhile, the African-born man had a look of intense concentration on his face. They were both engaged 110% in the activity. It was truly quite beautiful.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Happy Adventure

I am writing this on my new computer. I gave this to myself for my birthday. Little by little I'm getting things organized on a new computer. It's a Dell and it is shiny blue. It has a bigger screen. I really like it.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Adventures in the Hallway

Today students from the Hmong Academy were visiting our University. They appeared to be 8th or 9th graders. I got a sandwich and coffee in our coffee shop and was heading back to my office when a large group of students came out of a classroom. I stopped in the hallway for there was no where to go with so many in the hallway. Then I heard one boy announce: "Watch out. Don't run into that teacher person." I've been called a lot of things, but today teacher person was a first.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Cooking Adventure

Today I found my work computer didn't work. I went over to the library to try to use one there. Then I decided to use the online catalog to find some books related to Hungary. One was a cookbook, but I ended up pulling the wrong one off the shelf. It looked interesting, so I brought it home anyway. While looking through it I found a recipe for raisin bread that seemed very interesting. I decided to get some yeast when I went out to mail an important letter. It took two stores to accomplish this! Came home and got it all together easily. I found my countertop works just fine for kneading bread. Now I wonder about how it work for rolling out dough for Christmas cookies!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Academic Adventure

Yesterday was the culmination of an academic adventure. Last spring at the faculty council there was a call for someone to serve as a faculty representative on the committee plan the inauguaration events for our new university president.I volunteered for it sounded interesting and would be a good thing to put on my list of "university service." We started in late April developing the themes and for the first time, figuring out how to incorporate the use of web sites with the events (First time because the Internet wasn't mature when last president was inauguarated).

To make a long story short everthing went off very well. The ceremony opened with Native American drumming. This culminated with the introduction of a dancing stick which the new president had commissioned. It was made by a Native American artist from Wisconsin and will serve in the role of "mace" in the future. Up to this point, the University had objected to the president having a mace, saying such an object was militaristic and weapon, not a symbol of education. Incorporated also was gospel singing. Nothing staid at our University!

The day continued with a reception and then later a dinner.

All went very much as was plannned except none of us had planned for a day of rain. A great day!