Thursday, January 20, 2011

Grad school, end of break, and other things...

I have been accepted to grad school!!!! Anyone who actually reads this would know that already, but I wanted to put it here anyway. I was accepted into the graduate program at the University of Hawaii, which is currently my second choice school. I also heard from the University of Illinois at Chicago and was accepted by the department there. Illinois also offered me a very nice funding package and so now I don't know where to go. I'm basically waiting for other results and will decide once I've gotten all the information from all the universities.

Classes start Monday, which will be nice since it means that people will be back in Canton. I actually don't have class on Monday, but it'll still feel like the semester has started, which will be good. I'm looking forward to actually being able to celebrate my grad school acceptance with my professors and ask them for advice and such.

I'm also looking into field schools for next summer, or any fieldwork opportunity for that matter, and have possibly found one in Virginia that's good quality and relatively cheap. I also found one in Poland that's roughly the same, but a little more expensive. I'm also thinking of going back to Scotland to do stuff with SERF, but I haven't seen anything for them yet. I'm also trying to see if I can find anything cheap in Southeast Asia, but I don't think that will happen.

Not a whole lot else going on, though I'm thinking of getting my draft of the books I was writing about Indonesia out again and working on that some more. It might be cool to have another book out there, and hopefully better written than the others. You know, I don't do the books for money or anything, or so that I can go brag to people about having written a book. You probably aren't thinking that, but just in case you are, I want to explain myself. I like the idea of having books of my travels that are printed so that my stories are recorded. And I like recording my stories so that one day I can pass them on to my children and possible grandchildren. I remember going to my grandmother's house and taking out these huge photo album scrapbooks that she had compiled of her travels around the world, and I remember looking through them both on my own and with her. I also remember sitting on her lap and listening to stories of cormorants fishing on the Yangtze or having a picnic in the middle of the desert. I loved listening to her stories, and while I'm awful at maintaining scrapbooks, I'm pretty good about writing things down. I also have a tendency to forget my camera or I fail to take pictures or something, so writing is the best way to convey the images. So the reason I write those books is to have something I can pass on, like my grandmother's scrapbooks.

Part of me wonders if I should make those sorts of books for shorter trips I've taken, like the field school I did in Scotland or the trips I've taken to Morocco or France or Spain. Actually, to be honest, those went so fast that I don't know I could write a book about them. But then again, maybe if I sat down and tried it, I'd find the memories come a lot easier. We'll see about that, but first I'm going to see to the Indonesia book, because I really do want some version of that printed...

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