So, graduate school! I've now had one week of real proper classes, though I still haven't been to two of the seven, on account of labor day. Monday's my roughest day, with three classes: the archeology lecture, Latin sight-reading, then Hesiod. Eek. At least only two of those assign homework/paper/readings, eh? Anyway, so far:

* Greek sight-reading is a delight. Very challenging, because we're reading Homer, who I haven't done in something like five years, and my Greek sight-reading is always pretty shaky on the vocab even before we get to the Homer-specific vocab. But still, a great deal of fun; the prof keeps repeating that it's a No Shame class and that no question is too basic to ask, and she'll explain the parsing on things as she gives answers. Three students, one professor, round table, photocopied bits of the Iliad. I'm pleased.

* Archeology is both a lot of fun and quite intimidating. There's a 24-page paper assigned (on top of some map quizzes, tests, and so forth) where I need to focus on, you know, artifacts. Not text. Every time I come up with a topic idea, I find myself going over all the textual support for it, not the artifact-based support. It's a very different way of thinking about things! Which means this is exactly the kind of class I need to take. It'll expand my academic horizons usefully.

* Lucretius is darling, and pretty grammatically straightforward; most of my hiccups so far have been when I can't figure out if a final A is long or short, or forgetting the gender of less common vocabulary. I suppose this means I should get better at my scansion so that I can work these things out myself in that whole slew of frustrating endings for first declension nouns/adjectives. I have two presentations and a big paper on him, and the first presentation is coming up fast, but I think I'll be okay. I can do a half hour on Herculaneum if I just prep properly. It's interesting!

* German Reading is...pretty much exactly what I expected! The book charges briskly through basic grammatical concepts, and so does the class. Having taken two semesters of regular German is helping immensely for pronunciation when I read aloud and for some of the vocab. Which reminds me that I ought to go study for Tuesday's vocab quiz.

* And then there's Intro to CNES, which might as well be called How To Grad Student. We started out with the history of the department, to explain some rather puzzling organizational issues, and we're spending our next two sessions in the main library with various librarians, learning how to, well, library. ("You might not know about the secret collections--well, they're not supposed to be secret, but you wouldn't know on walking in to ask after them," the prof says.) Future sessions cover things like: attending conferences and giving papers at them; professional behavior with respect to your colleagues; technology for teaching; how to handle sensitive topics in teaching; different styles of research; resumes, CVs, and job hunting as an academic; and, well, so forth. It seems like an immensely useful class. Do all grad schools have one of those?

On the more lifestyle side of things... I am learning that Minneapolis is super walkable, but that I still hate walking in sunlight. (That may change as it gets colder.) The Green Line is my new best friend. The bars aimed at students are just as mediocre here as they are in Austin, which is no huge surprise. (I was served two tacos that were basically unfolded burritos. Tasty, but not very taco-like.) It's tricky to work out groceries to haul on the train that'll last most of a week and give me multiple dinner options without too much prep. Adverb is better at being an apartment dog than I would've suspected. The apartment is quieter than I dared hope, except on every other Saturday, when the tailgate parties start at 8am...

I'm lonely, off and on. I miss my cat(s). I miss my spouse and my house and my housemate and having a yard with a doggy door instead of having to watch for Adverb's sign he needs to go outside, which consists of staring at me quietly until I get the hint. I miss the chest freezer and the HEB. And the amount of Things To Do that I have coming up, academically, is absolutely staggering: three classes with big papers, vocab study and grammar study and academic reading and presentations and a HUGE amount of translation, and that's before getting into the vast and terrifying reading list for PhD students. And I do worry that I don't have a very tight focus on my thesis-to-be, yet; heck, I haven't even figured out what my obligatory minor will be.

But overall, I'm happy. And I'm getting things done, and I'm trying to get into a routine of reasonably healthy eating and walking and so forth that'll stand me well as a habit once I'm beaten down by snow, papers, and the general grind of things.

So that's the state of me.
lizvogel: Good / Bad (Good Bad)

From: [personal profile] lizvogel

The archeology class sounds like excellent fodder for writing. (Yes, everything revolves around writing in my head.)

The CNES class also sounds really cool. I didn't know they did things like that, and it's a terrifically good idea.

Sounds like you're getting into the swing of things nicely, so far. Thumbs up!


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