I'm enjoying a peaceful and quiet Monday after a most hectic weekend.
All of Saturday was devoted to the diocesan convention--a business meeting inside a wrap-around Eucharist. A surprising number of people were aware of my election result, even before the Bishop unexpectedly made an annoucement to the entire convention. (And asked me to stand up in front of the 300+ people assembled there.)
When I think back to how few attendees I knew at convention in the first years I was a delegate, I marvel at the change. My integration into the wider diocesan family is greater than I ever imagined. It was a lovely day, discussions were respectful and productive. And we got out early!
No green spinach wraps after all. Bringing home some takeaway for supper--Spicy Singapore Noodles--helped me over the disappointment.
Yesterday our small parish celebrated the 6-year ministry of our Rector as he departs to serve a much larger congregation. The outpouring of affection was so moving. It was a very large crowd at the service and for the reception afterwards. (We had plenty of food, but not enough chairs!) This is a wonderful change for him, and though we will miss him so much, we can rejoice that his pastoral leadership led us to a place beyond our imaginings.
Another change noted yesterday was my friend the rabbit who lives in the forest. I hadn't seen him for quite a long time and was overjoyed when he emerged from the undergrowth. But at first, I almost didn't recognise him! Since our last meeting, he's changed. His fur is thicker, his coat lighter--especially on his chest--and his ears and underneath parts are increasingly white.
Here's a comparison. August on top, yesterday on bottom.
I'm afraid the changes aren't as evident in the lower picture as they were to me. The light was low, it was bucketing rain, and I shot him from a great distance. But when he rose on his hind legs to nibble a hemlock branch, I could detect the whiteness in places it hadn't been before, and places where his fur was lighter than before. And the backs of his ears have gone grey.
I'd never accurately identified his type. His tail and ears seemed wrong for a cottontail. His size seemed right for a snowshoe hare, but I wasn't fully convinced.
But, as the showshoe is the one that turns white in winter, I'm now satisfied with that identification. I hope he returns throughout the winter--he'll be lovely in the snow!
Late yesterday I attended a focus group session about an hour away. I was expecting a political discussion--and for a brief time we rated and talked about potential Presidential candidates. It was mostly consumer research related to a mass retailer whose employment policies are getting a lot of criticism. It was very interesting.
I was paid $100. In three hours, I earned the same money I'll get for one year as a State Representative!
And speaking of that, in transit I was able to make use of one of the perks of my high office. In the mail I received a paper that allows me to pass through all the state tollbooths without paying the toll! This was a pleasant surprise. It's like having my very own E-Z Pass, only I won't get billed for it. All I did was show it to the booth attendant, and I got the green light. It saved me $1.50 (75 cents in each direction).
Last night we watched Prime Suspect. Jane Tennison is one of the most fascinatingly flawed characters in television (Dr. Gregory House also fits that description, for similar reasons). I already know far too much about this final series, which was broadcast in the UK already. Even so it's wonderfully gritty and gripping.
I'll mention one other change: my calendar. It's filling up really, really fast with events and gatherings at the State House.
Please excuse me now, I've got a book to write...must make the most of this un-busy day!