I talked to the Judaic Studies program at UCSD today, and thank God, they still have an available teaching position for me. Richard Friedman is backing the financial end of the deal, and his generosity means a great deal to me. It won't work out the Winter Quarter, as they originally offered, because it is too late. But I've committed to teaching there in the Spring Quarter which begins March 30th. So now my schedule seems to be as follows: I will stay in Omaha, though gladly travel to New Orleans at any time when John Dye our Allstate insurance adjustor calls us back. But in early January I will be in New Orleans, and I am very much looking forward to seeing our president Norman Francis address the faculty, and also to talking to students. Several students who have contacted me have said that they are very much looking forward to theology courses, as they want to try to better understand, and talk about, exactly what happened with Katrina and New Orleans. I can't wait to talk to those students. I think it will be cathartic for both the students and myself. I am scheduled to teach maybe a class or two, who knows. It is all up in the air. Also it isn't yet clear if Therese and the kids will be with me in New Orleans or stay in Omaha. Then after teaching at Xavier, on March 30th I am scheduled to travel to La Jolla where I will be teaching at my alma mater UCSD. It will be great as Ami Mazar will be there that quarter to join the fantastic regular faculty and there will be plenty of discussion about archaeology. Then after June 9th, when the quarter at UCSD ends, I'll be off to Israel to excavate at Tel Zeitah.
I am very much looking forward to being busy. Filling out insurance forms and trying to find a work habit with no library is awfully difficult and personally depressing. Tomorrow I will bicycle to UN Omaha to work on the paper I am co-presenting with Jennie Ebeling at ASOR. It is about beer, women and archaeology.