I wonder how many more I will receive before the deadline in a week and a half. Will I really be able to hire the best? Will I pale in comparison to their accomplishments and potential? How many nearly-best applicants will I have to pass over, simply because I haven't the funds (like so many departments) to hire more? Will what I have to offer them actually satisfy? I thought I'd be vetting unemployed PhDs, those like me who've spent inordinate effort for nothing. But I've yet to receive an application from that sort. Either they've just finished or are about to finish their doctorate (in one case, only a Bachelor's degree), or they're already Assistant Professors. Where are the mes of the world?
I've created the post I was looking for. But I'm no longer applying; I'm the boss. How odd. How truly odd. And the chickens are not yet home to roost. Something could always fall through. The two year contract may be delayed, or fail to get finalized. I don't expect it (at this point it's highly improbable), but I've grown leery of overconfidence, and I've gained a rooted sense of pragmatism. I know that whatever occurs, I'll be fine. The boost in my confidence and the validation of my research that I've gotten over the past couple years is enough to sustain me for quite a while.
Even in the worst case, however, we won't lose our house. I'd still be able to cover the mortgage on the new office building downtown for a couple years. I worry about those hopefuls whom I'd be forced to disappoint, the ones who by right I ought to hire, whom to be honest I would be thrilled and honored to work beside.
I remain confident that things will continue to progress. I have this second project commencing in the next couple months. I have transitional funding from my first project through the end of the year. And the two-year follow on contract remains only a few (albethey significant) formalities away.
If all goes well, I will be hiring some of the choice candidates in the coming months. I will move into my new office in the next month. I will have stable and rewarding employment for the next couple years.
Joni Mitchell's words and Judy Collins' voice best sing my life today:
Moons and Junes and Ferris Wheels,the dizzy dancing way you feelwhen every fairytale comes real...But now friends are acting strangeThey shake their heads and say I've changedWell something's lost, but something's gainedin living every day...