How to Vacation?

I can’t be the only academic to struggle with this question. Our family vacation begins tomorrow (a week down in the Tidewater area!) and I’m working to leave my work behind.

I didn’t get all the writing done that I’d hoped — my article will miss the CHA deadline and I’ll have to submit to one of the alternate venues once I finish the revisions and expansion. I want to get to another writing project waiting in the wings, but the folder sits forlornly in my desktop vertical file. I hope it will be complete before that spot is taken over by one of my fall class preps!

I’m not taking any work with me: no writing, no articles to read, no course preps to tweak, nothing academic at all and the thought is killing me. I keep thinking that I could do something useful with the spare moments here and there but I am also determined to take advantage of the few weeks of vacation I’m allowing myself (maybe two and a half all summer long). Nobody told me it would be this hard!

6 Responses to “How to Vacation?”

  1. Mel Says:

    It’s hard, but real time totally off is incredibly good for you. Take a small notebook and a pen so you can jot ideas down as they occur. But otherwise, just go on your trip with the intention that you will return refreshed . . .

  2. ancarett Says:

    Thanks! I’m going to give it a try. A week without the internet should clinch the deal.

  3. terminaldegree Says:

    My first “real” vacation was to Hawaii a few years back. I had a moment of panic–no museums, no history tours–what was I going to do all day, since I don’t like sunbathing?

    And then I discovered something shocking: relaxation. :) I came back refreshed, minus my “academic slouch,” and ready to work again.

    It’s worth a try. And if you start hankering for something with footnotes, drink something strong. The urge will pass. :)

  4. Another Damned Medievalist Says:

    I have to take a security blanket, but I try to make it something I want to do, like a journal article I want to read. I often don’t, but I feel better having it with me.

  5. Baruch Grazer Says:

    You’re already gone, but: I like to take along one challenging read that is in no way associated with my field of study. Say, some Stephen J. Gould or (if at the beach) something about pirates.

  6. drhistory Says:

    I think the best thing about REAL vacations is that you are among people who don’t care what stupid things the provost is doing or how that dean is spending his resources or what goodies the business people get that the humanities people do not. Instead its talk about real concerns, kids, new resturants in town, and sports.