Friday, May 27, 2011


I'm preparing to head out on a very long drive to New Mexico. Once upon a time (when I was younger, probably), I probably would have been very excited to leave and see the country. Now I feel the need to just get out there and do it. But it's never the destination, so they say -- whoever they are. Whoever they are, they're probably younger than I am, and so are excited to sit in a car for hours on end.

This summer is the first summer after I started the Ph.D. program at Harvard University in the Anthropology program. I will be doing some mapping around Jemez Pueblo, about an hour away from Albuquerque. I haven't been to New Mexico in awhile -- well, just last year I was in New Mexico, but around the Four Corners area and at Aztec and Chaco Canyon. That's just a tiny bit of New Mexico. I'm talking about the belly of New Mexico -- Fort Sumner and Billy the Kid's grave and Las Cruces and Santa Fe and the desert and Taos and everything in between. The West is great, and I haven't been out west for almost a year now.

Despite my excitement, I still have to sit in a car for days.... I'll be sure to pack my copy of Roadfood.

So I'm making my preparations to leave home like I do every summer since I became an archaeologist -- finding babysitters for the pets and new homes for my plants, putting away the school clothes and breaking out the fieldwork clothes, unearthing the Camelbak from all the camping gear, reorganizing the camping gear, and making sure that most of the academic albatrosses that have been circling my head have been hunted down and destroyed. I sent off the ferrets to the babysitter out in Boston the other day, and am now missing them very much. But the good news (and bad news) is that Sonny the sun conure gets to come out to New Mexico. There was the option to board him to spare him the cross-country trip, but he's so bonded to me. It won't be his first cross country trip, anyway, and he's endured the past trips like a champ.

Blogging will be interesting, given that I won't have internet access, although I'll have 3G and wifi access in town somewhere, I suspect. So I'll see how it works out. In the meantime, I'll continue packing and shoot for a Saturday departure. In celebration of my escape from the 02138, I might grill up a lion steak before my departure. If I consume the lion, will I get the lion's strength?