Thursday, April 12, 2007

Upside down/Inside out

The world... the world appears upside down and inside out. The events of this week confuse me.

An email last Sunday arrived from the organizer of the [Field 1 & Field 2] conference where I have had a poster accepted in the UK next month. I was ready to send my regrets and withdraw. But I looked over the schedule and presentations. Really interesting, some of which seems squarely relevant to both an academic career and one in [Applied Research Field]. Then, I noticed my name listed in the first slot for the first of three poster sessions. I don't suppose the placement is part of any hierarchy, but it certainly adds a degree of prominence to my name. I began to think I ought do whatever I can to attend. I would likely learn a lot, and gain a good many more contacts (as well as see many of my disparate friends whom I know from other conferences).

Today, I received an email inviting me by name to participate in a Workshop in Canada by the professor organizing it. It just happens to take place at the exact time as the conference in the UK. I'd be their guest and a participant, but they suggested travel costs may not be covered. We have a rather limited travel budget and request participants to seek assistance from their universities. Um... considering circumstances, not likely I'll find any university assistance. But it's nice to be wanted.

Then, a few minutes later, I received an email from the producer for a nationally syndicated radio show, asking if I would be willing to be interviewed as an expert for this week's show.

I'm ... just flabbergasted. And... I'm supposed to be on vacation. I'm really bad about vacations, especially when I'm feeling I've nothing to vacation from. [SIGH!] I'm overwhelmed. Are these good developments? I would think so. But I'm just not sure how to respond.


Lilian said...

Hmmm, wow, so much going on! It's like this saying we have in Brazil (and which probably doesn't sound good in English): "It's either 8 or 80."

Breena Ronan said...

I say go with you gut. What does your gut tell you about what you want to be doing?

ArticulateDad said...

Ah, Breena Ronan, you've hit it on the head. What does my gut tell me? I spoke briefly with my coach this morning. He pointed out that when you walk away from something, you're inevitably walking toward something else. I feel myself walking away from an academic career. The question then is, toward what I am heading?