I just want to take a moment to commemorate a few things I miss about working in the Archives as we round out the third week of stay-at-home isolation and remote work. I am glad every day that I can keep myself healthy by taking medical advice to limit my trips into the public at all costs and to wear protective gear if I do so, but I cannot deny that I miss a couple of things about going into the 4th floor of Wells!
- I miss physical processing. I have always appreciated processing collections of records or manuscripts. Surveying the old papers, considering an order or organization process, reading bits of history, and building a finding aid that will help patrons are activities that I have grown to love in my time learning about and working in repositories and rare books libraries.
- I miss in-person collaboration. Video conferencing is a sufficient supplement, but it’s so much easier to bounce ideas off of colleagues and peers when they are in the office with you. Everyone at the Archives is so wonderful and so knowledgeable, and are amazing mentors to the students who work for them. Of course they still are in our new remote environment, but having everyone together in the workroom was wonderful.
I think that in these difficult times, it’s okay to both celebrate the bright side of the current situation and reminisce fondly on the things that we miss about “normal” life.
Hang in there everyone!