I had such a strange and involved dream last night, a key feature of which was my lamenting that I somehow didn't know any senior professors who could help me and make me feel welcome. I seemed to be at a big university but realized that I didn't know a single senior member of my department. This absence took on different forms during the dream -- sometimes I realized that I was teaching in a department that was distinct from the English department; sometimes I was brand-new to a university and hadn't met people yet -- but the consistent feature was that there was no one to guide me, which I was anxious about.
It was such a vivid dream that it took me awhile to separate it from reality as I was waking up, but then I suddenly realized that I am actually not in a university at all but rather at FGS, and that I am a senior teacher!
(Well, certainly not the most senior. At FGS, the faculty process into commencement in the order of how long we've been at the school, and I'm at the mid-point, closer to the front [that is, the faculty of longest tenure] than the back but not by much.)
I wonder if this has to do with my Summer Writing Project (option #2)? I'm over halfway through reading the novel, and I'm really enjoying it and am excited to write about it, but yesterday I was thinking about whom I would ask to read a draft when the time comes, especially since Jewish American lit is a new area to me, and I was feeling acutely alone academically. I love FGS, as you all know, but it is certainly not the place to find writing partners for academic articles.