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2008-01-01 - 1:31 p.m.

...Reflections in five year intervals..

Happy new year! 2008 has arrived.

Twenty years ago, I lived in Rhode Island, although I was definitely home in the midwest for the holidays. I was still very much involved with my first love. In college, I was living in a fraternity house, and my roommate had just tried to kill herself in front of me. It was a dark time, but some good things came out of it. For one thing, I moved into a new room with my friend Katherine - who remains one of my best friends to this day. And I was just discovering that I liked geology, and that I wanted to be a scientist.

Fifteen years ago, I was living the life of a poor grad student, rooming with my friend Bee, in the Hudson River Valley. I had never been to Europe. I had just completed my masters degree, and I was in a long distance relationship with my English boyfriend who was a lecturer at a university in Barbados (where we met). I was an avid contradancer, and I wore lots of batique clothing.

Ten years ago, I had been living in Sweden for 4-5 months. I was in another long-distance relationship with a laser physicist who lived in New Jersey (and was also an avid contradancer). I spent my New Year's Eve alone, watching an all-night ABBA video marathon, while trying desperately to finish up my thesis so that I could fly back to NY to defend. It was a most surreal and depressing evening. But, I successfully defended a little over one month later, so I guess it was worth it.

Five years ago, I was living and working in Jena, but my mind and heart were in a state of flux. I was visiting family in the Midwest, and applying for jobs in the USA. If you ask K, he will say that we were a couple. If you ask me, I would say that we were floating through a dating no-man's land... That Christmas, I almost accepted a gov't position at a US funding agency. I had also just applied for a position at Dutchess, and was strongly encouraged by my mentors to turn down the gov't job, and to stick it out for a professor position. Hard to believe that this was all before the US had invaded Iraq. It feels like ages - and two whole countries - ago.

This year, K and I stayed up in bed and talked and cuddled through the local Funcouver fireworks, and watched the film Adaptat1on (funny and highly recommended for those who liked B3ing J. Ma1kovitch). I'm in the last stages of being an incubator. I have one pair of shoes that fit me. I am imagining how different my life will be, once again, in five years, and wondering if I (and the rest of my family) will be living in yet another new and different place.

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