Next week the teaching begins, and my schedule will lose a great deal of its flexibility. The day-to-day "wake when I want, work at whatever time of day seems best" flexibility will remain, but the broader flexibility of escaping for long weekends as needed will be gone. I'll be teaching a Tuesday/Thursday class, and suddenly a short weekend is the best I can do. Cancelling class is acceptable for the conference I will be attending, but not, say, to visit family or just get away from grad school.
So Labor Day weekend became my last escape, five days to relax and recharge before the semester begins in earnest. It was a truly American vacation, consisting of sleeping until noon, staying up late watching movies with my sister and brother-in-law, and fitting in some quality bonding time with my two-month-old nephew (whose idea of bonding is finding new and interesting places to spit up on me, then smiling as evolutionary survival mechanisms kick in).
Now, of course, the post-vacation stress begins to kick in as I attempt to finalize 8 weeks of readings in just seven days, on top of all my usual dissertation and mentoring work. The replenished energy stores should last just long enough - and then I'll actually be teaching. If only they weren't graduate students, and I could convince them to call me "Prof" on a regular basis.