Anna Maria Locke

Happy weekend!


Today was almost perfect.
The weather has finally turned (for the second or third time again, ha) which made me so happy.
Even though I love summer and warmth, I have been CRAVING some cooler days, and I don't know why! I am definitely NOT ready for winter again. ugh.  But the humidity level has plummeted and it just feels completely refreshing. It also has made me realize that the trees are starting to change, which I guess I didn't even see before since it felt so much like summer.
The fiddle player was back at the farmer's market, and I bought lots of apples and more peaches, since they will soon be gone!

I love me some farmers markets

(Over the summer, I set a goal to get as much of my food locally as I can.  It's been really easy to do that here so far, out in Amish farm country, but we'll see if I cave to the convenient globalization of the grocery store once summer and fall's fresh produce supply dwindles to winter squash and greens...)

It was so nice out, I ended up wandering downtown for a while.
Tomorrow night is the first "real" Big 10 home game, against Iowa, and things are already beginning to gear up for it downtown and around campus.  Crowds of people and ESPN tents galore.  I wish I was into football so I could be excited :P Instead, I just have to strategically plan my errand-running so I don't get stuck in the traffic nightmare that occurs when 50,000 extra people pull their Winnebagos into this tiny town.
What I love about it here is that it feels small and cozy, but there is SO MUCH crammed in.  Every time I am out I discover some new little restaurant or alley.

Here is the Corner Restaurant, which serves really really bad paninis [and is overall the only "bad" restaurant experience I have had here so far. Well, B had a bad experience :)]  On the left side of the building, under the awning, is the basement bar Zeno's where we go Monday nights after our Intro to Geog. Research class (all incoming grads have to take it) and I expand my beer horizons.

Aaand here are some lovely rose bushes on the way back to my building :)

On Friday afternoons, the Geography department has a 40 year tradition called Coffee Hour.  We host a speaker (either from our school or some other notable researcher or "friend" of the dept.) and have an informal social gathering before the lecture.  The first year grad class is responsible for bringing food, making coffee, and designing a poster to advertise the speaker each week.  Today three female faculty members talked about their different international service learning programs, which pretty much made me want to pack up and build wildlife corridors in Peru to save the jaguars.  THEY ARE SO PRETTY!!!

I am really excited for this weekend. Not because I have any huge fun plans, but because I have two empty days to myself, to do anything! I love that feeling. I have been so hyped up about my first fieldtrip-free 2-day weekend that I have been riding on this ridiculous and crazy adrenaline high for the past couple of days and have turned into an insomniac.  I am so weird.
I'm thinking I'll have to re-evaluate my color choice for office/living room paint, since this sample looks a little too dark (full coat is darkest splotch on left)...yikes! I like bats, but I don't want to live in a batcave!!

The only thing spoiling the perfection of today is my stupid hip. Hurting again. I am so frustrated and feel like I won't be able to really run again for a loooong time. It's like a part of who I am has been taken away, and it sucks.