November 10, 2009

Home again

Academic conferences are an exercise in sleep deprivation for me. Always, there’s so much to see and do. Concurrent sessions run all day, beginning at 8 am, and every evening brings a plenary session or event. Leisurely dinners begin at 9 pm or so, and stretch way past coffee and dessert as long-term friends and just-met colleagues talk excitedly about books and ideas. And in any spare time – which for me is in the very early morning when all my friends are still sleeping – there’s a whole city to explore. I got up early one morning to walk through the nearest park, which was filled with green lawns, trees in muted yellow, and benches occupied by sound asleep homeless men.

In City That Burned During the Civil War, the sunshine and warm breezes felt like summer. Thankfully, the organizers of the conference had scheduled a generous 90-minute slot for lunch so that each afternoon my friends and I could find a restaurant with outside tables and soak up the last sunshine we might see for months. It was hard to leave – in fact I stayed until the last possible minute and came home on a very late flight. I’ve got photos to post and stories to tell but first, I need to catch up on a week’s worth of sleep.

Urban park

The park nearest my hotel.

8 comments:

Sandy said...

Including the traditional nekkid photo?

Lilian said...

Glad you're back!

Sorry we missed you (it would have been hard anyway since we left home at 7:30 pm on Thursday)...

&

Jealous that you got to meet my "neighbor" Laura (Geeky Mom), or, rather, that she got to meet you. ;-)

jo(e) said...

Lilian: I had a great time hanging out with Geeky Mom. She even posed naked for the blog ....

Definitely, you and I will meet one of these days.

Digger said...

Welcome back!

justin said...

I hope you've slept well.
Lovely photo as usual, Jo(e).

Lomagirl said...

Glad to get my morning fix of Jo(e)!
Now off to teach.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Pretty! I miss you!

I think I'm going to apply for a fellowship.

I never get to go to conferences any more.

Beach Walkin said...

Dang... so close and yet so far away!!!!