22 May 2011

New, Temporary Haven

I've not made it a secret that I don't much like Northern Virginia. Mostly because one almost has to drive to get anywhere, and the traffic is as bad as any place I've traveled stateside except maybe Chicago. So it feels very good to be in new, albeit temporary, environs after my second year of seminary at VTS.

Granted, I haven't scored quite as awesome a set of gigs and digs as last summer. But I am excited, for my first stop, to be back in a college town for a while. I'm currently living in New Haven, CT, a couple of blocks from Christ Church, where Kristin is an intern with St. Hilda's House.

New Haven, I am learning with good help, is an admittedly troubling place. It goes well beyond a mere case in point of Town and Gown Syndrome to a level of wealth disparity that is truly heartbreaking. I've been lucky to spend some time this past year at the bright spot that is St. Martin de Porres Academy (Kristin's intern site) and to hear about several others from her colleagues. But there's a lot of darkness too. Indeed, the most common sign I see even here in the comparatively serene Chapel West Special Services District is a warning about constant video monitoring.

With that important preamble, though, I will say that it has thus far been close to heavenly for this very lucky wannabe academic to get to work here. With support from the Evangelical Education Society of the Episcopal Church, I've got a nice sublet (see below), decent Yale Library privileges, and five weeks to dedicate to developing an online curriculum module for a course on the conversation between science and theology (you can follow my progress at intoalltheWWWorld.org, the site I'm starting to host the course materials--and I hope others in the future).

It's about three blocks to morning prayer and another three to my adopted office, so I count myself extremely blessed and will plan to leave my car put as much as possible. I will, however, be taking to the skies in a couple of weeks, to give a paper on Walker Percy at Pepperdine's Christian Scholars Conference and hopefully make some contacts with potential reviewers for my course.

More to come on these later opportunities, but the next legs of my summer will take me to Camp Webb (most of July), Camp Oliver (living at home for the first two weeks of August that will feature a diocesan internship of some kind and my parents' joint 60th birthday party!), and Camp Campbell (catching some baseball in KC with the Turner House crew).

Sublet photos (living room, kitchenette, bedroom, hallways with icon/"mendicant" summer mascot):

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