Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Back at it.

I've now gone back to dissertating. But I should explain what that entails at the moment: going through the Red Cross documents I photographed in January. There is an enormous amount of key material I need to organize, hierarchize (that is not a word, I know), and then read and take a few notes on for myself. This is going to be a very long process. But doing this is absolutely necessary because only once I've read through this stuff (quickly and smartly) can I start laying out a chapter outline. And only once I've done that---or at least done a little bit of that---can I start writing. I'm happy the American Red Cross kept such good archives, but god damn I do have moments when I wish that maybe they hadn't. An older, well-known historian commented to me at the US National Archives one day something about fires being a historian's best friend. Indeed ;-)

But seriously, it's great to have this stuff, especially since there is pretty much nothing in the Canadian and British Red Cross "archives" from my period.

In archives-related news, I booked my flight to San Francisco today. I got what I think is a good price on a round-trip, direct flight on Air Canada in the second half of August. I am now seeing about getting myself a place to stay in Palo Alto for nine nights while I do research at the Hoover Archives at Stanford University.

Today was mighty hot in downtown Toronto. FN and I had a Cajun/Mediterranean-themed dinner, which was perhaps appropriate. Also had home-made fruit smoothies; also appropriate.

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