Then comes my favorite time of year. I will be crossing campus and realize that everyone is gone. For three months the campus will be empty and silent, with people occasionally perambulating across the muggy, hot campus, from one air-conditioned building to another. It’s as if the whole university goes into suspended animation.
And it's fabulous. My friend Karen and I used to call it "The University Without Students."
If anyone ever asks why people go into college teaching there are many important things to say about the satisfactions this career can deliver. But there’s one thing we could all agree on, I think, regardless of our field, ideological bent, or temperament. To paraphrase Bill Clinton: “It’s the vacations, stupid.”