Sunset over Pioneer Valley
If you are a reader of my blog you may have been disappointed that I’m not posting new entries on a regular basis. But the life is so intense that I use the free moments to watch a movie with my bf, not writing. Maybe the latter would give me more satisfaction and benefit in a long term, but in the short term every moment of my conscious intellectual activity is dedicated (a) to preparing (finally!) the classes for transitional justice course- I solved the dilemma how to tell about different phases of development of TJ this morning, now have to put the ideas on paper and ppt; (b) solving different issues that arise in Riga, with clients- me being away does not eliminate their possible problems and questions, often this means only answering to some emails or reviewing documents. Nevertheless, it often takes at least an hour of my day, sometimes more); (c) reading or skimming books I take from library; (d) thinking of new research plans and meeting people / arranging meetings to pursue the ideas. After all the aforementioned, we could add the fact that there is a beautiful weather outside and I just have to drag myself for a walk or to read on a bench somewhere outside to enjoy it. +20 at mid October is something a Latvian can appreciate.
And then sometimes the days come when I have exhausted myself and cannot understand why I want to pursue all those projects, feel empty and tired and lonely. Fortunately, 21st century and internet connection allows us to connect also remotely. I am sincerely grateful to my friends who spoke and wrote to me this week, encouraging, giving tips on vitamins, being with me remotely but allowing me to feel loved. I love you too, guys!
What I wanted to say with all this rambling? Maybe that despite the challenges I met (subjective or objective) and despite the fact that everything is not going exactly according to my plans, I am grateful being here. I love this place (read an article claiming Amherst as 6th best town to live in the US), I love the inspiration and possibilities it gives, and I love the way it looks, especially in the fall. Hopefully I will depart from my desk for longer than an hour or two during weekend and will visit someplace nice.
I often think my mom would love this place. Intellectually stimulating, with university around the corner, art galleries, cultural events taking place on regular basis. And the nature - mountains all around the horizon. When I visit different places, hike the trails, find new grocery stores (like the Chinese place around the corner), or try different restaurants, I imagine taking her or some of my friends to these places. I know the places Gerda loved and would loved if we had found them last time. Strange feeling, wanting to show this neighborhood to my family and friends.
And once I started about showing and sharing, here come few pictures from the top of Sugarloaf mountain: a place over Sunderland, at the bank of Connecticut River from where you can even see the highest buildings of UMass.