Archive for December, 2014


December 12, 2014

Gimli is buying a ticket to Albania, leaving this Sunday – I’m hacking away at dissertation revisions with the goal of defending the last week in January. This is harder than I thought it would be. Unearthing contact information for our babysitter from 4 years ago, in case the grandparents get burned out next week while I’m on the final stretch.


So I did find my SS card, in the lock-box at the credit union. But spent a long afternoon at the DMV only to find I had the wrong kind of proof of address with me. Will need to try again sometime but can’t afford an afternoon away from the computer. (They’ve made it really complicated and difficult to get a new license in VA, since some of the 9/11 hijackers had obtained licenses here. But having my expired license really helps and I should be able to re-take the road and written tests the same day I go back in again).


The kids are enjoying the preschoolers paradise that is the grandparents’ house, and got to see snow for the first time in 4 years the day after they arrived! I had an ok time at the anthropology conference – saw a lot of people, didn’t get much sleep, spent most of the time holed up at the hotel doing revisions. Last year I heard around 50 papers (around 15 minutes each), I was so hungry for academic discourse. This year I think I heard maybe 10? Mostly stalking my dissertation committee members. I am so bored with this project. It just needs to be done.


Microblog Mondays: Rabbit Hole

December 1, 2014

This afternoon I submerged myself in the detritus of the last fifteen or so years, opening boxes laced with spider webs and insulation dust that held file folders and mementos from so many different phases of my life, it was dizzying. I was looking for my social security card, which I need to get a new driver’s license, which I need to drive in the US. But today, I walked everywhere – from my in-laws’ home where I’m staying a few nights, to campus to see BFF #1, to my old house where I let myself in the back door tripping over the renters’ boots and bicycles by the door. Down the narrow stairs into the dusty dark. Drawers filled with plastic tubs of old coins in various currencies; candle ends, a ceramic dish bought in South Africa in 2003. File folders from my first foray through graduate school, course work dated 1999. Reused Pampers boxes labeled “Oz baby clothes,” which I left taped shut. The palpable physicality of these things is what gets to me. Air travel makes distance and space so unreal to me. But touching the old leather and fabric of a hand-stitched wallet from Bolivia hurtles me through time in a way that is more physical and feels more real somehow than the flight from Bogota to DC. I don’t feel like I’m explaining it very well. I opened a manila envelope marked “Ob/Gyn” and found the wrist bands from the hospital stay for Illyria’s birth. I stuck my nose into the envelope and inhaled a scent so fresh and sweet, I couldn’t believe it, in the middle of all that dusk and dank.

Not sure what #MicroblogMondays is?Read the inaugural post which explains the idea and how you can participate too.