It is a sad fact in academia that the only way to win a research grant is to have published previous research. A Catch-22 since most of us are not independently wealthy to conduct the research needed to publish, which is why we apply for grants in the first place. All this to say, I had to abandon the grant-writing venture (on the advice of the grant-giving institution) and then went off on vacation to lick my wounds.
I took work with me and didn't touch it until the plane ride home. My justification? I had taught constantly from January to July, including two full semester courses within the span of seven weeks at a European university. Whether I deserved a break or not, I enjoyed my family, sightseeing, drawing, eating fresh grilled herring sandwiches and the World's Best Donuts, beach combing, Lake Superior pedicures and lakeside meditations. I returned to the university renewed and refreshed, ready to tackle anything this semester could throw at me.
Including the dean's announcement on Friday that, as of January 2011, I no longer have a job.