Holiday 2020

Dear Friends. We all know that 2020 has been an unusual year, and the one we experienced in Maine is no different, although it may be a bit more angst-ridden. We’ve been remiss in writing this year’s missive until now for a number of reasons, which may become apparent when the tip-of-the-iceberg is revealed, after reading one of the two versions of our holiday wishes and yearly update. We’ve chosen to send a postcard to those of you who reside stateside, or a letter to those of you who live abroad, letting you choose one, or both, of the following files to download and read. We’ve gone this route in 2020 because one, or more, of you may fear the unknown arrival of that pesky nanometer-sized virus that is better known in some circles as the “Kung Flu pandemic.” There are two versions of our holiday letter from which you can choose.

If you’re a fan of Lucy Ellmann-style prose, following her Booker Prize long-listed 2019 nomination for Ducks, Newburyport, which will be a more adventurous and angst-ridden, ADD-style (Attention-Deficit Disorder) of writing, said to rival James Joyce’s Ulysses, of which we all know few have ever managed to complete, or want to feel the same angst as we have felt during 2020, choose to download the 2020_Christmas_Ellmann_Style.pdf

For those of you who may be a bit less adventurous or a pseudo-fan of the angst-ridden prose, and would rather go with the Vanilla version, because the above may look daunting, choose to download the 2020_Christmas_Vanilla_Style.pdf

As you ruminate on which decision to make, above, here are a few select family images from this past fall and holiday season.

About Robert Gastaldo

Professor Gastaldo is Whipple-Coddington Professor of Geology and served as Department Chair from 1999/2000 academic year, upon his initial appointment, until 30 June 2012. He was awarded a Forschungspreis (Research Prize) from the Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung, Bonn, in 1991, and returned to Germany as a short-term visiting scientist in 2012. He has been awarded two Fulbright Fellowships. The first appointment was at the Laboratory of Palaeobotany and Palynology, Utrecht, The Netherlands; the second is at Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa. He is a Fellow of the Geological Society of America and the Paleontological Society, served as co-Editor of SEPM's journal PALAIOS and on the society's Executive Council, and continues as a reviewer and funding-panel member for various U.S. and international grant agencies. Professor Gastaldo's research focus is in the plant-fossil record and the response(s) of terrestrial ecosystems to perturbation, and engages undergraduate students early in their careers in original research endeavors. His wife, Elvira, is one of the Colby Quilt Club advisers, and she assists departments across campus with temporary, short-term assignments. Together, they have 3 grown sons who have pursued their own career paths outside of academia.
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