Ceilidhs & Tribes

This Friday is my 26th birthday, and I am having some friends over for dinner. The usual tradition for my birthday has become that I will make my own birthday dinner and everyone else is responsible only for helping to celebrate. This year, with the enthusiastic encouragement of friends Cara and Megan, with whom I recently attended a brilliant concert by Scotch-Canadian fiddler Natalie Macmaster (six months pregnant and still step dancing!) and her band, I am hosting a very amateur Ceilidh (Scottish Dance Party), at which I have promised to demonstrate what I remember of Scottish folk dancing. On the menu is Beef Guinness Stew, Oatcakes, Neeps & Tatties, and pudding.

This has put me in a socializing frame of mind, and I decided to search out what Scottish dance societies exist in the Boston area. I am in luck! The Boston Branch of the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society does indeed exist, and offers social events and lessons. If I manage to remember what "leisure time" is as a graduate student, it may have to include a few Gay Gordons, Reels, and Waltzes.

Meanwhile, my Uncle Lynn is visiting this week from Kentucky and rhapsodizing about Boston, his former (and still, at heart) home. He earnestly assures me that the people there are not at all cold--as some accuse New Englanders of being--and that I am certain to "find my tribe" there. I am expecting no miracles on that front, but enjoyed his enthusiasm nonetheless. He owes me a visit once I get my feet under me, and perhaps once I have acquired and air mattress.


Getting Started

Welcome to "Future Feminist Librarian-Activist," where I will be maintaining a written account of the things that happen that friends & family like to know about as I move to Boston and begin graduate school at Simmons GSLIS.

As I write this, we returned roughly a week ago from a family visit to my grandparents in Bend, Oregon (see pictures). It was lovely to see my grandmother at home again after her stroke last fall, and also to spend some quality time with Brian, who joined me for a three-day road trip to Portland (Powell's Bookstore!) and the Oregon Coast.

When I returned to Holland I found my financial aid award letter waiting in the mail. I've been given over $10,000 in grant money for next year--a good third of my expenses. This still means I'll be taking out $20,500 in loans and continuing to work part-time, but it does mean that my financial picture is becoming more clear--and feasible! Three cheers! The next thing to tackle will be housing decisions.

I've spoken with one of my managers at Barnes & Noble here in Holland and he has encouraged me to try and transfer directly to a Barnes & Noble in the Boston area, which will mean job continuity. I am hopeful this will work out.

Meanwhile, I'm preparing for library school in the only other way I know how--continuing to read! Which, of course, I would do anyway. I've just discovered the delights of author Cornelia Funke, whose book Inkheart follows the adventures of Meggie, a girl whose father accidentally reads an arch-villain out of a book. I also recently discovered, through one of my favorite feminist magazines, the Marvel comic series, about a team of (mostly female) teenage superhero/ines . . . while I'm not a devotee of the genre, I thought these were really fun and conceptually interesting as well. The taken-for-granted feminism of the relationships within the team is nice to seen in teen lit.