A friend said that it's alright, as in normal, to mourn for a job. And I am. It was always the right place for me, even though there were times when I wasn't the right person for the department. But the students were so interesting -- often first in their families to go to college, or immigrants who had or hadn't entirely learned this language or foreign students who were in an entirely new and sometimes very strange culture.
It was perfect for my shy nature because I was in the role of instructor, taking care of a group, like a sheepdog, circling around, hoping to nip a bit at the heels to provoke more work, working harder, thinking more, trying to provide a congenial environment so that they would all talk with each other, exchange ideas.
I liked that urban university much more than I had like teaching at MIT where everyone was fiercely overachieving. Failure was not an option. And, though I hate to admit it, failure is something to learn from.
Anyway, it's over. I left on principle, regretfully. Very regretfully. The courses I'd been so comfortable teaching, darkroom work, now incorporated digital imagery with which I'm not familiar enough to feel comfortable especially without enough equipment. Oh, it was a rational decision. Made from my high horse and with lots of philosophical stuff thrown in. And now, of course, my dreams, night time dreams and early morning thoughts, are about getting back there. This is, I gather, part of the mourning.
So, the next issue is what I'll do with the next ten years. I think I was there, trying to think about that before the ulcerative colitis slapped me down. But enough of this.
Romeo is quite a fine rabbit who belongs to Sammy's daughter. He is from Peru and has the stalls down from Monica's so I get to talk to him. In his country, he says, he'd have a cigarette now and then, after dinner or some occasion like that, but once he got here, he was smoking three packs a day. "They put something in them. You need that cigarette. You really need it. I didn't need it in my country." He was working three jobs, or sometimes one job that took 14 hours a day because help was so hard to find. He made good money, but he paid out so much in taxes that it was crazy. He was overworking, exhausted and smoking. But his daughter said, "Papa, I smell smoke on your clothes. Why are you smoking? I want you to live." So, he quit, no patches, no lozenges, no gum. He quit. He's still convinced that tobacco companies put something extra in cigarettes to make people so dependent and desperate.
My computer has started fussing, just after I'd printed two months of the 2008-2009 daily self-portrait series. And the monitor went pink and the images went blue. And I never know how to solve these problems. The last thing I want is a new computer (expensive!) if it doesn't work exactly the way this one does...Right now I do not want the learning curve of learning upgraded programs. But we don't always get what we want, it says here in fine print.
Anyway, again apologies for my laxness at reading other blogs...
and thanks to whoever reads this...