Rainy days and Mondays

I know rain is necessary to water our planet, but it is decidedly inconvenient today. Be sure to grab a raincoat before you head down to Sailboard Beach for the 2010 Worthington Regatta & Unvarnished Music Festival. I’ll be in the Daily Globe booth from 2 to 5 p.m. if anyone wants to stop by and say hello.

Fellow newsroom buddy Beth mentioned earlier this week that rainy days should automatically come with naptime. She startled me slightly when she said it because I was staring blankly at my computer screen, kind of in mini-nap form. Her comment snapped me back to reality, which is never a pleasant experience.

Rainy days and Mondays don’t exactly get my down like the Carpenters say, but they do make it hard to be effective when it comes to self-starting. I just want to curl up in a chair with a book and a mug of tea. But I have so much to get done in the next two days.

There isn’t much I can do about the rain, but my next few Mondays are going to be very interesting. I won’t be battling that sleepy Monday feeling.

I leave this coming Monday for a week in Washington D.C. with the Murray County Central choir. We have a whirlwind schedule in front of us, full of sight-seeing, choir performances and fascinating history. Just looking at the list of things on our itinerary makes me a little weary.

Just when I was starting to wonder if I should have taken a few days off work for recovery time after we return, an opportunity was presented to me. I was asked if I would be interested in jumping aboard a helicopter Monday, June 21 and flying to Camp Ripley for a chance to observe Iowa National Guard members in training.

This is the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Divisions’ last significant training event before mobilizing for active duty and leaving Iowa in preparation for deployment to Afghanistan later this fall. The news release states, “Journalists will fly via an Iowa National Guard CH-47 ‘Chinook’ helicopter from various locations across Iowa to Camp Ripley. They will arrive at approxi-mately 12 p.m. at Camp Ripley for in-processing and credentialing, and then depart for the Camp Ripley Forward Operating Base training areas where they will embed with units from their local markets. Journalists will spend the next 20 to 22 hours in the field with these soldiers before returning to the Camp Ripley cantonment area for departure back to Iowa.”

There was no way I could turn that down. I’m very excited and just a tad nervous. After all, I’m not exactly at the peak of physical fitness these days and will have just spent a week chasing teenagers all over Washington D.C. I’ll be a bit tired. But for the chance to talk to some of the men and women who will head off to Afghanistan, I’ll find the energy. The shift from looking at war memorials and pieces of our country’s history to meeting the soldiers who make our country possible is going to be incredible.

So, this Monday I leave for Washington D.C., next Monday I head to Camp Ripley, and the last Monday of June is my birthday. I’m reasonably sure I’ll be feeling my age that day. Oh, and the following weekend is the annual Parenteau 4th of July Bash, which takes up the whole weekend. That Sunday is the 4th of July, Independence Day. Luckily, I get July 5 off. I’ll need the break.

It certainly does take the ick-factor out of Mondays for the next few weeks. Now if only I could do something about the rain.