For the next six months, my wife and I are staying in a condo rental while she finishes a semester of work as an adjunct professor.
Work is slim for academics right now, with tenure-track positions being the most scarce they have probably ever been in the last century.
My wife finished her PhD dissertation in sociology, only to find out that her school had no positions open when she received her diploma. Hoping to work underneath one of her closest professors, she was devastated when the department head announced the budget cuts that shrank their hiring abilities. She had no choice but to look for work elsewhere. That’s how we ended up in this small coastal town along the Gulf of Mexico. There’s a small college here and essentially nothing else. For the next six months, we will be staying in this condo rental about two blocks from the beach. The location is nice, but the condo is in fairly bad shape. Although there is ceramic tile, several tiles are cracked all over the unit. The water in the shower drains slowly and the toilet takes several flushes to go all the way down. On top of that, our air conditioner is old and smells nasty when it runs. We saw mold on the outside of the air handler when we located it in a random interior closet. Unfortunately, the air return is at the floor level, which means any dust, dirt, pollen, or spores that get tracked in by our feet are immediately kicked into the air conditioner. It’s not the best situation all around, but I guess I should at least be thankful that there is an air conditioner in here at all.