So, folks: as promised here’s the skinny on the new gig and our odyssey over the week. I’ve been in the interview process for the last few weeks. Because the job begins in January, interviews had to be conducted via Skype, without the usual on-site second interview. As a result, I still haven’t been up visit my new home. Here’s what I know so far:
The school has around 20,000 students which accounts for two-thirds of the town’s roughly 30,000 residents. The art dept. offers several degrees and asks students pursuing a BFA to declare as either 3-D, 2-D, digital media, or graphic design majors. This allows for a greater flexibility for students between disciplines rather than being strictly a printmaking major for example. By all accounts the art department faculty gets along swimmingly so students move freely between shops.
The print program could easily have 100+ students in the shop every semester. That will make space and press time a premium. I may wind up spending some all-nighters á la grad. school in order to work on my own prints. There are a number of print spaces devoted to intaglio, litho, and two dark rooms for screen and photo etching and litho. My beginning class will offer relief processes, a brief photo litho. project, extensive intaglio techniques, and monotype. That’s about all I know right now! Here’s some other (sorta) interesting tidbits:
After seven years living in Louisiana, a state dependent on Big Oil, then spending a semester in Coal Country, Bowling Green by contrast is quite Green. The region built a new coal-fired power plant recently, but much of their power comes from a large wind farm. For a teensy up in rates, you can choose to get all of your power via renewable sources!
BGSU apparently has either a good sense of humor or a daring fashion sense. The school colors are Orange and White in a town called Bowling Green!
The climate is similar to Cedar Falls, though a bit warmer in the winters and a bit more mild in the summers. And though we’re close to Lake Erie, because we’re on the west bank we won’t have to contend with lake effect.
Now, about the drive. I got the call at 7:30 Thursday morning and we immediately got in the car–we were about to leave for Iowa anyway– to check out the campus and look for apartments. I got pulled over not too far from home for going 72 in a 70. I was talking to Grandma Phyllis through my steering wheel at the time, so I kind of snapped at the cop when he came to the window. I was either going to get out of the ticket, or go to jail; adrenaline can make you do crazy things! He asked how the Kia was doing in the high winds then sent us on our way.
We continued on our way. I had been in contact via e-mail with some apartments in Bowling Green all week about potential spaces. At no point did they mention that they would be closing down for the holiday on the Thursday before Christmas. By the time I found this out we were near Louisville (I was obviously a bit overzealous!) so we stopped to see Sue and meet her mama. There was no question they were kin! It was only a shame that the rest of the Quaacks weren’t around.
After Louisville the wind really picked up as we drove west into the storm. Hannah drove for awhile as I took a nap. She did a really good job in the wind and rain, and even as the rain turned to snow, but I took over when the snow started to stick. Around 7:30 the roads were getting really slick and I was left on the interstate with the trucks. When the big rigs were only going around 20mph it was clear it was time to get off the road. We were planning on staying with my great-aunt Jeanie and had been calling with changes of plan all day. We wound stayed in a Red Roof Inn in Le Roy, IL to wait out the storm, hoping the roads would be clear by morning.
Alas it was not to be. We stayed in the hotel a mere 4 hours from our destination, but that last stretch took 10 hours to drive. Between semis driving 30-45 mph most of the route, and getting stuck behind major accidents on I-80 that took hours to clean-up, the result was another full, white-knuckle day of driving. I could go into more detail, but it makes me nervous just thinking about it.
We followed up our trip to Iowa with a journey to Colorado, 11 hours on Christmas Day. Snow was rumored to be rolling into Kentucky in a big way, and we didn’t want another white-knuckle drive. The roads to CO were clear, and that’s where the Sanders Clan was headed, so we followed suit. We had a fantastic time! More pics and stories coming soon. Including our visit with the fantastic Melanie Yazzie!
Now, we’re back in Kentucky. I’m leaving late Tuesday/early Wednesday for Ohio. Hannah will stay behind to pack and get the move together. Stay tuned for more news about the big move to Ohio. Happy Holidays everyone!