Sunday, June 12, 2016

Sunday Thirsty

We all know how draining academic life can be, how the endless nibbling of the goldfish of tiny obligations and petty disappointments and administrivia and email can erode away the energy, the sense of identity and purpose, and the well-being of the academic.  But now (for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere) it is Summer Glorious Summer.  

It's actually raining and in the low 60s Fahrenheit here in the UK, I'm doing assessment paperwork on a Sunday, and my diary has multiple meetings every week about Curriculum Reform between now and the end of July, but let's pretend!  (I just ate an ice-cream cone, and can smell several barbecues in the neighbourhood).

So, to my Thirsty, which has an appropriately spiritual Sunday theme:

Q: What are you doing this summer* to restore your Academic Soul and return refreshed to the fray come Autumn?

* in your copious spare time around the writing things you need but don't want to write, teaching summer courses etc.
- Grumpy Academic


  1. This site has become worthless. A perfectly interesting question and zero responses. I am sad but I need to go sonepkace where information actually is shared. Too bad. This place used to really cook. Years ago.

  2. It's a good question, and I'm sure it will get answers. Give it a bit (I, for one, am thinking about it). Besides, as Kimmie's and Amelia's posts remind us, the news yesterday was deeply disturbing, and more than a bit distracting from anything else.

    I also suspect that, as the final footnote suggests, many of those of us still online at this time of year have trouble coming up with an answer, precisely because we actually aren't engaging in as many restorative activities as we really want/need to, even though we know we'd be better teachers (as well as more sane human beings) for it.

    So maybe the non-answers are an answer? If so, that's sad, but not surprising.

    But I'm still thinking -- so far, what I can come up with is a bit of gardening and trying to straighten up/organize my apartment so it's more pleasant to inhabit and some reading of actual fiction and non-fiction books (the better to remind my brain what non-internet reading feels like). That doesn't, frankly, feel like enough, but it's probably most of what I've got. I also get to wake with the sun (and without an alarm) for a few months. It's not of my doing, but I love that about summer.

  3. Drinking more heavily than usual.

  4. I'm taking a painting class.

  5. Every so often, I'm going to try to let things at the job "just happen" while claiming to be unable to access email for a few days. When I return, I'll try to sweep up the retrievable pieces and glue them back together into something better.

  6. I have re-read a book I read in middle school (Atoms, Stars, and Nebulae, by Lawrence Aller), and am astonished by how GOOD it is.

  7. I took a vacation, refused to look at my email for a month, and returned for the second summer session in much better shape than I left in May. Even now, I'm working on long-term goals, rather than emergency projects, since students are not around.

    Madame Librarian