Sitting here in the quiet cozy confines of the departure lounge in the Kamloops airport, and it feels like a significant departure point in other ways as well.

I’m about to head off for a two week jaunt along the US west coast, much of it riding shotgun for the Bava’s game repair scavenger hunt. Starting with some days in Los Angeles, hitting the desert, and then slowly and raggedly making our way north. Expect to see some other folks along the way.

Other than a few short trips within the province, this is my first travel holiday in almost exactly three years, when I was in Mexico with my mother. That was a weird trip, news was already emerging about this strange virus circulating in China and the lockdowns there. By the end of the holiday, I was working much of the days because I knew there wouldn’t be much time once I got back to brace for impact.

I did have a three week stint off work in Kamloops last summer, and looking back I realize this was a departure point for me as well. It was my first sustained downtime since the pandemic had hit, and spending some time with some special friends, my brain and body finally started to crawl out of fight-or-flight mode and I began to feel things again. I tried to identify some harmful patterns I’d been mindlessly looping inside and made an effort to break them up. I tried living as if my life was something worth living. As the numbness subsided, I felt a more profound lifting of a long heavy sadness… one that went back many years. I think I started putting better energy out into the world, and much better stuff came back at me.

Life is still very full, and I work myself into an anxious state if I think about certain things for too long. I’ve got a long way to go before I get to where I want to be. But overall, I’m finding myself feeling unfamiliar sensations like happiness and hope. Feeling better in my body and my mind, a little at a time, forgiving myself for the setbacks when they happen.

I want to do more blogging, and been giving some thought to how I have been approaching this space lately. Given the tumult of Twitter, I’m less engaged over there, and still finding a rhythm on Mastodon.  I’m wondering if I might go back to how I blogged many years ago, with more casual, sometimes more personal posts.

I am looking forward to sharing some of the work the LT&I team is doing. There have been some significant organizational changes, but what has not changed is I am absolutely thrilled with the people on the team. I expect we are going to be challenged to meet the evolving needs of our university community, and I know we will be hit by the unexpected, but we are finding our groove and I am really grateful for what this group is doing. I also find them to be delightful people and I dig working with them. I know how special that is. Looking forward to sharing a little more of what we are doing soon.

One of the fun things coming out of our group right now is Brenna Clarke Gray’s latest series for the TRU Digital Detox, with this year’s theme The Robots Are Coming: AI and the Education Revolution. As ever, I am in awe of Brenna’s effort, insight and writing, I highly recommend checking it out. Not least, because I really don’t want to talk about ChatGPT today. I’ve got a flight to catch.


8 thoughts on “Departures

  1. Here we go! Deep in day three of an amazing Reclaim Hosting retreat, and starting to set my sights on some abject entertainment in Los Angeles. I will see you soon!

  2. What an epic trip, it feels almost like a road trip screen play. Waving to you both. Keep those windows rolled down and the music way up.

    I for one am eager for more abject lights here in the feed reader.

  3. Can’t wait to hear about your adventure! Hoping your friend finds all the parts he’s looking for, and you both enjoy some exciting new discoveries and sensations on your trip!

    1. We are only heading as far north as Portland. But I was saying to a friend yesterday that I hope I can make it down your way soon, would be so good to see you!

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