I love to be places and I get excited about experiencing new cultures, sights, history and especially foods. What I hate is getting there, especially if I am traveling alone. I don't like flying to be specific. It's like voluntarily loading onto a flying cattle car, paying to pack ourselves tightly in with germy, snotty, farty humans with no health screening. And me. I'm the grumpy cat of flying. I look bored, unamused and ready to bite at a moment's notice. I will too. Thank goodness for Dramamine- I tend to sleep the entire way. I was on a plane for 7 hours each way and lost an entire day in traveling.
Driving is a different story. I love driving, especially across the country. I love the changing landscapes, the wild open expanses of fields and hills and the bustling cities I zoom around on my way to somewhere else. I'm all like "out of the way, I have important stuff do to!" and I beep beep my way on into the sunrise. It's awesome.
I had a presentation proposal accepted for the National Council of Teachers of English this year in Boston, Ma. I love doing teaching presentations, and I really love doing the national ones. It's a great way to meet people and talk about teaching English. At NCTE I get to reconnect with my old grad school friends and this year, both of my dissertation advisers. My friend Kimberly Stormer let me crash at her hotel because I was poorly funded by my university this year.
|At Boston Common|
I got to hang out with Cathy and Jackie too. I'm sure you know all about my friend Cathy- she and Charlotte pretty much threw my wedding. She read a Shakespearean sonnet at my wedding and currently lives in our house in Oklahoma. She picked the house out for me in 2005. I started planting an orchard in 2006. She brought me six apples from the trees. Four made it home. What a kind gesture!
|Here we are at a pub having dinner. The bouncer- a huge man with a handlebar mustache- waxed philosophical about the virtues of teachers in a thick Boston accent.|
My advisers, Baines and Angelotti, have always been close to me. Baines was Kimberly and mys copresenter (along with Anthony Kunkel) and he came up with the proposal.
|Me and Baines|
|Me and Angelotti. He's my academic dad.|
|Flying into JFK on my first flight|
|Decorations outside of Hynds Convention Center|
|I love NWP!|
|Jackie, Cathy and Johanna presenting|
|Boston Public Library|
|Close up of Trinity Church|
|Paul Revere's House|
|Boston Terriers in Boston|
|George Washington wearing a Red Sox jersey|
|A tree in Boston Common|
|And a Willow|
|The Frog Pond|
|These are all doors at Trinity|
|Trinity from afar|
|A seeker of knowledge outside of the Library|
|I think this is Franklin's grave|
|John Hancock's grave|
|Paul Revere's grave. He's a big deal.|
|I can't remember the name of this church.|
I got to see Temple Grandin speak at the conference. I video'd the first 8 minutes and put it up on Youtube. She has Asperger's Syndrome and is so brilliant. I was blown away. She may not have social graces but she is an engaging, enlightening and hilarious public speaker. Here is the link. Sorry for the poor quality, but it's my iphone. And I was excited!
I made it home just fine; left the hotel at 3:30 a.m. and got into Seattle at 1 p.m. local time- so 4 p.m. Boston time. I slept on the plane a lot. I was freezing on my last flight. I put on my hat, coat and scarf and was still shivering. But I was being quiet and trying to sleep. We were in the exit row, and the middle seat was the only one not taken on the plane. The man sitting opposite me obviously took pity on me. He called over the flight attendant and quietly asked her (presumably so I wouldn't hear) to turn up the heat so that I didn't freeze to death. She did and it got much better. He's a good example of what a small kindness can do for someone's soul.
I'm glad to be home with G and Eleanor. I guess they got along nicely, though I was told of an...incident. G was sleeping when he suddenly had a dream of dogs biting his chin. He woke to a small kitty gently but firmly pressing her claws into his chin to get him to wake up. I guess it was time to snuggle/play/eat/wake up! In any case, I think that was the worst consequence. We are off tomorrow for adventures in Thanksgiving. Wish us luck!