lauren michele (arrowed) wrote,
lauren michele

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billowing clouds over the bronx

there has been massive activity in my life, in just about every facet, since my last post. i'm currently sitting in my apartment, leg elevated (i'll get to that later) and staring out onto a gorgeous saturday afternoon, the cumulonimbus clouds billowing over the south bronx and harlem river. i woke up to a wonderful breakfast made by my temporary roommates, jon and mina, who have become a major part of my life because of close proximity, but will hopefully remain close when i move next week.

i've been teaching this summer with an organization called ASPIRA (, and my 6 week program is ending next week, which makes me incredibly sad. my students are bright, unique and have a very strong sense of self. most of them are not afraid of standing out in a crowd, in fact, they aspire toward their own individuality. luckily, about half of them will continue being my students in the fall, and i hope that i get to keep in touch with some other ones, too. the program is designed to help students make the transition into high school, so i've been focusing on concrete reading, writing and study skills that will help them next year. next week, we're closing out the semester by choosing a piece of writing and making a zine together. each student gets to create a page of their own, and i'm quite excited about it, even though it'll be a lot of work in the next few days.

my summer sublet, at this building called the clocktower in the south south bronx, has been wonderful. i'm subletting from one of my coworkers, a math teacher at banana kelly named annie. we joke and call ourselves the pod people, because each person has a "living/chill out pod" and a "sleep pod", situated one on top of the other. we climb up to the top to sleep. or at least i did, until last weekend, i realized too late that i have a poorly constructed ladder, when i climbed up and one of the rungs broke, causing me to fall. when the rung broke off, the two screws holding the rung in place were exposed, and dug into my leg. there was a deluge of blood (i've written a short story about it and there's a play-by-play account on my myspace blog -- mina took me to the ER where they gave me 33 stitches in my leg.

i am incredibly exhausted from this week of healing, even though movement has been minimal. i had to teach this week, but my boss was incredibly nice and actually came to pick me up and drop me off at home each day. they moved my classroom so that i could more easily access it on crutches. other than going to work, i have been here, looking out on the world like a modern rapunzel in my 5th floor apartment, wondering what it would be like to experience the gorgeous weather outside.

other than this small snafu, life has been incredibly beautiful, though. my heart feels full and content. i have seen so many great friends since i've been back in the city and i'm learning the bronx, too. i just signed a lease on a wonderful new apartment with some friends from detroit and i'm so excited to begin teaching in my first real classroom in the fall. i'm busily planning, thinking and re-thinking my unit plans and can't wait for the first day of school, even though i know it's going to be a lot of work.

just wanted to give an update. hope all is well with you, too. and now, to take a cat nap in the sun.
enjoy your weekend!!

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