When does a sabbatical start? Is it officially the time that we’re not lured to campus to take care of normal academic year responsibilities? Do the summers count? I’m inclined to say it’s the latter, since having fourteen months’ leave sounds even better than 9. But also, and more importantly, I would normally spend a fair amount of the summer fiddling with course calendars and reading lists, reviewing potential new textbooks and considering sites for field trips for the upcoming academic year. But since I didn’t have an upcoming academic year looming back in May, I could allow my mind, and the rest of me, to wander in a way that would be unusual–in fact, unthinkable.
But summer adventuretime is over now; my colleagues are all going back to workshops and meetings in preparation for next week’s start of classes; my own household landscape (where I will spend the majority of my sabbatical) has changed with the kiddos going back to their school. Today is the first day that I will have the quiet & concentration that enables me to open the great document and be busy at it all day long. ALL DAY LONG!!!