The first days of the rest of my life

It’s a day to update profiles. I might even have to brave facebook soon. It’s a day to change email signatures. The first days in a new job.

Not just any job, either. The Dream Job. The Holy Grail and other metaphors. The full-time, permanent academic post, in the same city as my family. No more fly-commuting (bye bye SAS gold card, I’ll miss you). No more leaving the goats. No more late nights in the office so I can spend more time with them on my home weeks. Instead it’s matpakker and preschool drop-offs and regular hours. Maybe even a dog. Just like a ‘normal’ family.

It also means teaching. I’ve missed teaching, funnily enough. Oh, I haven’t missed the random midnight emails or the marking. But I’ve missed the interaction with students. I’ve missed the challenge of presenting complex material in a way that it can be learnt by not-yet-experts. This time I have the added bonus of getting to do it all in Norwegian. Ditto syllabi, exams, assessments. It’s going to be a steep learning curve, and I am not ashamed to admit I’m nervous about that. I’m also confident the students will help me. It’s OK to not be infallible. I’ve never let the fact that I can’t sing very well stop me from singing musical examples in class, thereby showing that perfection is not a requirement and encouraging timid students to join in. The same will, I hope, prove true for my language. It’s OK to make mistakes, folks, we’re all here to help each other. Plus it’s a great excuse to teach multimodally.

But for now, the tea bowls are in place, the pink crocs too. The essential task of decorating the office door is underway. People to meet, names to learn and get muddled up, equipment to get to grips with, keys to get confused over… All the fun, messy stuff that is the first few days. The new life starts here.

Official, like.

Official, like.

  1. meli said:

    Hello! Congratulations! I stumbled across your blog last year I think via a distant facebook friend and it’s nice to read some posts here again (I loved reading what you wrote about PhDs and parenthood). I am in a very similar boat – just started my dream job (full time permanent academic post in Norway) a couple of days ago. The excitement is clouded a bit by my smallest child beginning barnehage and crying and crying, but apart from that it’s super exciting. I admire you doing it all in Norwegian – as my speciality is English literature I have a get out of jail free card there. Good luck! Enjoy!

    • Thank you for the comment! So sorry I didn’t see it.
      And congratulations on the job! I hope the little one is getting on much better with barnehage now 🙂

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