Yesterday I slept in late as usual on Sunday. I had arranged to meet the Lama for coffee in the early afternoon. Somehow or other, I actually managed to write two pages of my dissertation in between breakfast and heading up there. The power of routine!
Actually, I think it has to do with the phase I was in. I have to gather materials, make translations, figure out basically what I'm going to say and in what order. This is a really frustrating process for me because I always feel that I am going too slowly, running in place, not making progress. Once I have done that step correctly, however, I can write quite a decent amount. Not to say "effortlessly", but at least the process isn't painful. I guess it's good to take things apart like this and figure out which parts are hardest and why.
Lunch kind of fell by the wayside. I had an apple and a soyjoy bar before leaving, and a scone at the coffeeshop where I met the Lama. We had a really fun conversation. It reminded me very much of our friendly meetings in Beijing. We talked mostly shop, but with some personal chatter thrown in. It made me realize how much time had passed since we'd actually sat down like that, informally, outside his campus, and really just hung out. I hope we get a chance to do that sort of thing more often.
It was a very very cold day. The wind, in particular, was quite bitter.
Four years ago, in Grad School town, it was not nearly so cold. Four years ago, I was on my way to a reading group. I was late. I almost decided not to go. But because I went, I met Pocket of Bolts. We talked a lot during the informal discussion after the group proper. Then he invited me to the lounge in his department where they tended to hang out and party. It turned out we lived in the same building, so he offered me a ride home, asked me in, gave me a beer. We sat talking, looking at his books. I won't say it was "love at first sight" but the interest and attraction were definitely there. Four years! Has it really been that long?
Last night, to celebrate the anniversary of our first "date", we decided to go out for sushi. We've never properly eaten sushi together, since Pocket of Bolts was a vegetarian until recently. As we walked out into the cold night, big flakes of snow started falling. It was romantic and beautiful. We sat inside the rustic, wood-paneled restaurant and drank hot sake. The sushi was delicious, and we were full of smiles, proposed many toasts. Sake is good for toasting, since the cups are so small. The whole evening was really charming, and snow was still coming down as we walked back to our cozy little home.