This week I have ridden every day, following the subway here (20 minutes, though I think I got it down to 17 today busin' my hump) and taking the mountain road home. I still can't get all the way over without putting a foot on the ground. Especially if there is a lot of traffic coming up behind me, and especially especially if someone honks at me as he passes. That happened yesterday and just blew my concentration, and once you stop going up a steep hill it is really hard to get going again. I ended up walking a way until the traffic let up.
The traffic is not really that fast; they are dealing with stop lights and frequent stops by taxis and buses. Sometimes I pass cars going up hill, even as I am in granny gear, huffing and puffing and wishing that there was a short cut to getting serious bike muscles and lungs.
Maxine told me that it looked like I had lost some weight. I'm not sure that I trust her on this one; she knows I want to lose weight, and likes to say things to make me happy.
So I have biked back and forth to work 11 times out of the last 12 work days, missing only once because of a rainy forecast. I could have beaten the rain here, but there's no way to know that when you set off, so I'm probably better off not finding out. That puts me at around 92%, an A-. But they have forecast rain for tomorrow as well, so we will see what happens. As it is now, I change clothes when I get to work anyway, and my bag has a rain cover. If it is a light rain, I might ride anyway.
It seems that this is really the only way I will get regular exercise. I can't squeeze any more significant time out of my daily schedule, and this combines a necessary activity (getting to work) with a desirable activity (exercising). I know that some people wake up early to exercise. I just can't do it. Waking up early is an unnatural activity for me, whereas staying up late comes easy.
In other news, at work they are asking for all of the foreign English teachers to evaluate a big stack of English science books to choose one for next year. It will be a supplementary book, used a couple of times a month, and probably not by us. It's hard for me to build up much interest in this, as this school has a reputation for soliciting advise and then ignoring it. What does it cost them to ask us to spend time? Nothing. But we are not considered experts, in spite of our experience and first-hand knowledge. It is quite frustrating.
And at the end of October it is time for re-signing contracts for next year, and for the school to let us know whether we will be invited to re-sign or just resign. Unfortunately, there are already rumors about who will not be asked to come back, rumors spread by the people making the decision. It seems very unprofessional to me, but once again, I was not asked.
The other event at the end of October is Halloween. We will have our school-wide Halloween party on the 28th, with games, a haunted house, and candy. It will be a nice break from teaching, but it is ironic that we are doing fake scary at the same time that some of us are going through the real-life scary prospect of losing a job. I think if the party were after they dropped pink slips, some of our kids might get a bit more scaring than they had anticipated.