Saturday, August 18, 2007

The last days of summer

The month of August is always so bittersweet. It's hot, often humid, making me wish for fall, but it's also the last of summer and I always feel that once it's over, we hurtle at breakneck speed towards the end of another year. Another year. This summer in Austin has been one of the most unusual I've experienced in the almost 40 years I've lived here. It was so rainy and cool for June and July that it was hard to believe it was Austin at all. Everything was so green and lush. If summers here were like that all the time, we'd be the size of LA. August brought a bit more normal heat and humidity, but even that only lasted about 2 weeks before the hurricanes and tropical storms in the Gulf of Mexico lowered temperatures and brought the rain back.

So, I'm about to begin my second year in the graduate program in information studies. I feel a bit more calm about it, not so "kid in a candy store" about it. I have great classes lined up: a research class focusing on interactive Web stuff, where I'll get to work on my presentation from the trip I took to France in May; an intro to doctoral research and theory with my buddy Phil Doty (we've taught copyright and information policy together several times at the iSchool before I became a student); and a management class with MaryLynn, whom I adore. I guess I am still a bit like a kid in a candy store...

And work really hasn't taken any kind of break. In fact, while I've not had classes, I've put in extra time on the digital distribution (eres and Blackboard), UT Press (collaborative publishing), School of Nursing (open access) projects and picked up a new project creating a process for clearing our scanned books for posting as public domain works. This is exciting as it involves collaboration with other Google library partners, first off, University of Michigan.

So, very busy, very happy, but also a bit sad to see summer come to an end. And another year to fly by.

"And they tell him, take your time, it won't be long now, 'til you drag your feet to slow the circles down." -- Joni Mitchell, Circle Game

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