Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Last Hurrah?

As I was driving during my trip, and especially when I gassed up the BardiacWagon, I couldn't help but wonder about roadtrips, and whether I'll do another long one. It's not the length I was thinking about, but the gas. Will it get prohibitively expensive?

The road trip's a sort of fantasy for me, in some ways. When I was in the Peace Corps, I read Kerouac's On the Road, and loved it. I imagined myself hitchhiking across country, or at the least, biking my way.

When I was in grad school, I reread Kerouac, and hated it. By that point, the sexism really stood out. Yeah, I could hitchhike across country. But I'd be risking rape all the way, even now that I'm middle-aged. I bet Kerouac didn't worry much about that, eh?

So between those times, I'd (finally?) experienced enough threatening situations that the danger stood out in my mind far above the chance of adventure. I don't tend to be really paranoid when I travel alone, but there are times when I'd be very happy to have my old dog in the back with me. Don't get me wrong. I love travelling, and always hope for some adventure. Just not certain kinds of adventure.

(What is it with men sometimes? I was putting gas in my car in Texas last week, and there was a country jail bus at the gas station, too. The bus's windows were covered with metal with smallish holes in it, like you'd put in for some poor animal. And through those, I guess, the occupants of the bus could see me. And yell out comments. Was I supposed to be impressed? For a bare moment, I felt embarrassed. Then I started thinking, "Hey, make all the comments you want: in a couple of minutes, I'll continue driving across country in my car, turning on the air conditioning if it gets too hot for comfort. And you'll still be in that bus." I was sort of glad the commentors were stuck in the bus, because I sure wouldn't want to meet them face to face saying that stuff; I'd feel really threatened.)

I seem to have fallen out of the habit of blogging, and reading blogs. Maybe that's a good thing?

In other news, I got the small grant I wrote for to work with a student this summer.

One of my advisees got suspended from school recently. I found a copy of the Dean's letter in my box when I went yesterday. I think I need to work harder to get the advisees who are in most danger of being suspended in to talk. But I don't think that would have really helped this particular advisee, alas. I should drop her a note and offer to talk to her about the situation if she wants. I'll have to check to see if she still has access to campus email.

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