What I do during the not-field season

dsc_0050 On the one hand, I want field season to start up again, like today.  On the other, I still have so many specimens to process, so much data to analyze, so many journal articles to read, I could actually skip spring and summer this year and be busy for the next 12 months.

In the field biology realm, as it takes place in the upper latitudes, you have a field season and a lab season.  Depending on what your organism is and where you are, it could be 3-months and 9-months, or 6-and-6, which is how it is where I am.  For 6 months I’m almost never indoors and I’m cut up, bitten, sunburned, sweaty, stung and weary.  For the other 6 months, I’m rarely outdoors and I’m tunnel visioned, analytic, pasty, caffeinated, restless and nocturnal.

While I’m inside these days, with the sun low and cold and the rain ever present, I’m longing for the bucolic field days of summer.  When I’m traipsing around the back forty with vials tucked into my underwear, chasing my subjects and alternately being chased by them, those winter months sound downright cozy.