I got back to the States just over a week ago. The next morning, my 12-year-old started a week-long day camp and I went back to work. Our last few days in England had been a true vacation, sightseeing in London, and I’m really glad we took the extra days. At the time, though, it had begun to feel almost like a burden—there was a syllabus to write, after all, a talk to give at the faculty colloquy, a daughter to prepare for college. Those three days, though, (almost) internet-free and far from a phone, gave me the break I needed to get back to work this week.
This fall brings many changes. My daughter leaves for college next week—a week after I’ve already started classes. (So, yes, I’ve got guest speakers in my class for a day.) I’m starting a new administrative position, getting a new first-year seminar program up and running. I have three guest speakers to manage, and I’m on a search committee.
So I’m trying to hang on to that vacation feeling for one more day. I recently learned that folks who take regular vacations live longer than those who don’t, and it makes sense to me: we need breaks in the routine, times when we can focus on something other than work. The hope is that it brings us back to work refreshed, more agile, ready to go.
I’ll let you know how it’s working out.