As I write today, it’s a bit chilly and cloudy. The weather forecast promises at least a few more days of hot, sunny weather, but the season is turning in the rhythm of the year. Summer is over. The seasonal produce from local farms no longer features fresh blackberries and summer squashes, but includes winter squashes and root vegetables while the farmers let their fields rest. Students are done with resting over their vacation, school is back in session, and we must watch out for kids on foot and on bikes during our commutes.
My documentation is moving toward the release phase as the software engineers finalize windows and functions; my time goes into looking for the subtle changes, rather than learning how a function is supposed to work. The hardware is solid, so I’m able to get accurate graphics of how parts fit and function together. I like the rhythm of ramping up, working intensely, then ramping down for a brief rest when the project is done, and repeating the rhythm for the next project.
There’s another rhythm that runs through my head, the rhythm of music. Although I lack the sense of rhythm to easily perform music, I can follow a director as part of a group and memorize the rhythm in the context of the words, notes, and rests. Thank goodness for the rests in music: they provide a chance to breathe and be ready for the next phrase; they act like white space in text.
Recently, I learned a trick for making pie crusts, breads, and other pastries that are rolled out and shaped before baking. I work them quickly to mix, then sometimes vigorously knead them, and shape them into a square or ball before rolling them. I used to immediately attack them with my rolling pin, and wondered why such a nice tidy square or round ball could turn into something that resembled a map of Africa or South America. I recently learned that if I let the dough rest for a while, such as 10 minutes, before rolling, the dough is willing to remain a square or circle and fit nicely into the pan.
I love being busy, but I know that resting is valuable, too. I’m looking forward to November and December, when our chapter rests from monthly meetings. And in January, the chapter’s rhythm returns to regular meetings with the opportunities to network and learn.
I’m looking forward to seeing you soon at a meeting.
Marie McElravy, Editor