I've just returned to California after a really busy and wonderful few days in Philly.
I arrived late Friday night, and Saturday morning headed to PSCA to observe classes. Just being in the space again, with all of the energy of the students and parents, was a thrill! (photo is Marc and me, giving feedback to students rehearsing their showcase routines later that weekend). At first I was nervous at all the things that have changed in the last 9 months - new equipment, new kids, new teachers, new curriculum. But the more I was there, the more I saw that my personal mark still exists ... the school is full of items that I bought, or made, the books are mine, and even the structure of the classes still resembles the original classes I began teaching 12 years ago. And most wonderfully, it is a place I am still loved and valued... all weekend I was greeted with hugs, with appreciation, and with happy memories.
The rest of Saturday was Kitsie's wedding! I went with her to the hair salon, we had champagne in a limousine and photos in a park, and then the bells-and-whistles ceremony and reception at the circus school. Pride in being a bridesmaid, and having a huge number of personal friends and colleagues at the event, made it one of the most fun weddings I've ever attended. And I'm so happy that Kitsie and Chris are finally married! They are going to have a wonderful future together.
Sunday and Monday were meetings, meetings, meetings. Having met my new Managing Director, Marc, in person for the first time at the wedding (here is a picture of me, with Marc [middle] and outgoing Managing Director Robin on the right), we spent pretty much all day together on Sunday and Monday, meeting on a whole variety of subjects. We strategized for our children's programs, and hashed through the details of our in-house performance agency, Air Play Entertainment, put together a marketing plan, ran a teachers' meeting, and toured our current daydream future space, the old church. It was enough to overload both of our brains, but we kept it together and got a lot done. Marc has a tremendous amount on his plate in the upcoming weeks, but he is ready for it.
So, sleep-deprived, exhausted, but emotionally energized, I caught a 6am flight back to California this morning. The circus school is a living, breathing entity, full of people and things that I love. And, while I wish I could be there every day, for now I will cherish their support of my touring life. It is all good, and the future is bright.