I'm sitting in a room smelling of old books and pipe tobacco. Behind the blinds, there is dried ivy--it had come through the windows before they removed it from the building. On the wall across from me, there are boxes full of slides and film, and I wonder what is on them. Books have titles like Ghost Dance and the Ochoa Language, and are side by side with government records and reviews on all manner of things. So different than the conference rooms in my department, this is Anthropology.
We sit around a long wood table: two biologists, two anthropologists, and one philosopher. Today's topic is polyandry and polygyny in the Pimbwe, but it is bound to change. Every week, we gather to discuss anthropology and biology and sociology and philosophy and anything else that comes to mind.
This is the kind of thing I thrive on. Intellectual conversation, discussion, with enough humor to keep everything alive. Nothing is off limit here--socialism, religion, and western idealism and racism have all been topics of discussion. Some days, I feel grossly outclassed in intellect among this group, but still, it feels good.
This is the life.