Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Whenever you close a door...

A couple days ago, I received an email from the director of a workshop/institute in Canada, who had initially contacted me a year ago inviting me to participate as a speaker. Because of conflicts I was unable to take part, but we left the possibility open for future collaborations. The recent letter was rather thorough, with an update on what has been happening with the institute, and with her invitations and talks in the interim. She wrote in particular to ask if I'd be available to meet for a couple days this summer with some of her colleagues to discuss possible links between my work and theirs.
I am wondering whether you might be interested in having a conversation about possible links. I continue to feel that your work and background would suit a fruitful interaction.
I wrote back to say it was nice to hear from her, to update her a bit on my status, and to say, yes, if she could arrange it, I should be available to fly in for a two-day meeting.

She wrote back immediately:
Good to read from you. Yes, it's a tough road to find the sort of position you're looking for in academe. We're in the midst of trying to make a pitch for some of that here, and [the institute] is a centrepiece of that plan. Out of curiousity - does your news about stopping the frustrating job search mean that you would not take a position if it fell into your lap? (not offering, but in a longer-term sense things may emerge here...)
And so, the saga continues. I've learned however to count on nothing (except myself, and my family). That said, of course I'm intrigued by her continuing interest in my work. Would I consider a position that fell in my lap? Surely. Would I take it? Depends on the position.

Meantime, our house is almost in order. The basement begins to look less like a city dump, and more like a work-in-progress. We've framed the entire family/entertainment room, and are ready to start putting in the electrical. Another couple weeks? My father-in-law comes over about two days a week, for us to work on it.

We're almost done with all the unpacking. We opted to keep the Painter home for the remainder of this school year, then start him in first grade in the fall. We were rather unimpressed with the next school over, where he'd need be sent for the rest of kindergarten. This will give us some chance to visit the zoned school (and possibly others in the district if that proves equally uninspiring).

I'm wishing very much that I could have a normal week of working again. But moving takes time. It's good to be here though. I can say that with confidence. It's good to have a home again, to own a home again. It's good to have a sense that we're on a solid footing, that we're taken care of for a while, that we need not worry too much about finances, and can focus on life. One step at a time.


Lilian said...

OH, how interesting!! Yeah, your tagline is certainly very precise!

I hope you get to be fully "moved in" soon and that you can begin to work on your projects.

What Now? said...

Sounds like, in the middle of all of this upheaval and transition, you're maintaining a pretty good balance of research work, family work, and house/home work. Since I'll be in a similar situation in three short weeks (although a local move, which is quite different), I'm inspired!