This time of year always makes me smile.
For one, in the mornings here in North & South Carolina, sometimes you can catch a tiny flutter of a cool breeze, promising that fall will, eventually show up and cool us off.
I am almost instantly taken back to NC State's campus in the early part of fall semester. Moving back in. Walking to class in the mornings. The smell of ... Magnolias, I guess. Whenever I smell it, I instantly recognize it, but I still am not 100% certain what the smell is. It's not even a smell I particularly care for, but it's comforting just the same, because it reminds me of NC State in August and September.
First days - when you get a fresh syllabus. When you have a fresh notebook with clean paper. When you feel determined, enthusiastic. When I just know I'm going to give my absolute all to each assignment. I really am going to complete all the assigned reading. I will not wait until two days before a paper is due to start working on it.
Or, if you go back further, to the first days of elementary school. Those were good ones. New school clothes. New lunchbox. New book bag. New pencils. Lisa Frank. Stickers. Note pads. Tons of crap you didn't need. But - it made you want to try and also, stay somewhat organized.
Never lasted long, unfortunately.
I always envied those people who had planners that they used for everything. In super neat handwriting. Sometimes color coded, even. Everything had it's place. Every notebook perfectly put together.
Once, in middle school, (or was it high school?), I had a teacher who gave a grade for notebook organization. You had to turn in your whole notebook, and she had to be able to find everything - past assignments, notes, returned & signed quizzes and tests. It all had to be in its designated place.
And I loved her for it.
I was not, and am still not one to do that on my own. My "system" is more like, start off neat and organized. Derail. Panic because you can't find something. Regroup. Reorganize. Feel super proud and accomplished. Repeat in a few weeks.
Yep - the first day, and even the first week, is a magical time.
Still wanting an A.
Still caring if the teacher likes you or not.
But then - life happens.
You know. Halloween. Parties. Football games. Trips to Cookout with friends. Then the mall. Then stopping by so-and-so's place. Oops. Midnight. Too tired to study. Going to bed.
What test? What paper? What do you mean you won't adjust my D to a C because my attendance has only been 25% this semester?
This is why college teaches you more than just whatever random courses you're signed up for ever could.
Disorganized, yet perfectionist me.
Can't say much has changed.
Thank God I married my opposite.