Reminder! Tomorrow is week three of the writing group! Make sure to report your progress, and your plan for the following week!
Okay, so I'm here in G. And let me tell you, it's freakin' gorgeous. I'm finding loads of materials for my project -- in reality, probably enough for a whole other project, if I decide to change direction. Or, if I ever have grad students who read Latin, Blarg, and Blerg (medieval and modern), I can turn them loose on this stuff.
But what makes this short stay (8 days) in G. especially nice is that it, like a few other stays this trip, have been hosted by friends.
I've been coming to Blargistan for a very long time, ever since my dissertation days. And way back then, in the late 90s, a group of oh-so-miscellaneous grad students adopted me. There were dinners out at inexpensive restaurants someone's girlfriend had found (Senegalese food for 3 Euros? We're there). There were trips to the movies planned around whatever theater had a half-price night that night. There were 45 minute-long coffee breaks at the archive. And there are now long-running jokes with those who I still know from back in the day. Over the years, others have been added to this group, really cool people, genuinely fun to hang around with, and all tolerant of (or maybe morbidly fascinated by?) a yankee scholar and her sometimes bizarre ways.
And this trip, I went ahead and asked various of them if I could stay at their places for anywhere from 2 nights to a week. And doors were opened, food was laid on, mothers fussed, etc. etc.
Yes, there was a practical side to this: other than some nice guest gifts, I'm spending no money for my accomodations for 50% of my trip. But better than that is the feeling that I have several "homes" here in Blargistan. Most are spare bedrooms in family apartments. The one I'm currently in is a meticulously restored two-story apartment in what is essentially a 16th-century merchant mansion right in the middle of the old medieval city, a 90-second walk from the archive. But all have that nice feeling that you're being welcomed home by family (if you and your family were ever on your best behavior). Which is kinda awesome.