Something came in the mail this week from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand. The Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering (who use COSC as a prefix for their computer science courses) just held their end-of-year awards ceremony, the COSCARs. I was honored with this Most Wholesome Lecturer award:

How exactly I was wholesome I do not know. Some of my haiku can get a little subversive. But I am glad to accept.

I taught in the department in the first half of 2019. We were sorely tempted to move there. The landscape was magical, the weather was mild, the people had more emotions than just outrage and contempt, and the city united together in the wake of the mosque shooting in ways that I will probably never experience in America. Every day at lunch a group of folks got together and worked on the very challenging cryptic crossword from The Guardian. I’ve kept up this daily habit on my own, though I get my crosswords from an easier source. From time to time, my mouth waters when I think of the black currant chia bites from the bulk food section at the New World grocery store.

Alas, if we were to move, we didn’t see a way to stay connected to our families back home. Plane tickets are expensive for a family of six. Not to mention housing.

So, New Zealand is not our home. But it’s backup.


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