“living chicken lives”

We were actually talking about the merits of vegetarianism at this point, or at least of eating meat from grass-fed, naturally-raised, free range types of critters… but it struck me as a parallel for the life of academics as we unwound from the culminating presentations for the European Field Studies program.
This was after I learned about snakebite, car bombs, the end of lock-ins, and curiosity about transmogrification to the ritual of last orders, a.k.a., the mad rush. Which was well after Elizabeth observed that it sucked to go first, was awful in the middle, and terrible to be last. Brougton showed us all up – predictably! I can hardly wait for the right professional moment to unveil certain camcorder documentation…although Billy Martin the tinker-gypsy isn’t the best moment captured from yesterday.


Ioana wrapped us up neatly with her “linguistic tooth” and multiply-accented “Romanian with a difference.” I’ve wondered a few times if there wasn’t another kind of multiplicity occuring within our group as a whole but no substance evidence has yet materialized.
I managed to get off without another slam for an obvious faux paux (apparently one of the memorable events from last year’s pre-fieldwork presentations), and our 4th colleague surprised us with a lucid account of how his feasbility study evolved over the course of his thousand-kilometer jaunt along the Sino-Russian border.
I won’t record who described our erstwhile professor as “happy, or maybe crazed” but there’s no doubt we would not have made it without her! The photo we presented in appreciation increased in value after we recounted the saga of its production.
We shared many memories (and made a few new ones): I have to say, it was the perfect way to end our three-semester collaboration. ­čÖé

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