I'm on a conference-hating kick. Ugh. Sometimes I just don't understand what the point is. Why I do this several times a year. This is coming right now because, I must admit, this conference is chummy-chummy, and I am quite an outsider in terms of the field. I also did not feel like these were my people, you know? You get a vibe from a conference group, even a big one. This vibe wasn't for me.
I did have a couple of insights that are useful for me, going forward - with my work, I mean. Still, though - coming all this way for a "couple of insights." If I weren't having a holiday, I would be sad about having come.
I did see an old friend of mine at this conference - someone I taught in a big course with ten years ago, and haven't seen for a good five years. She is a hilariously manic person who decided that we would be inseparable, as soon as she saw me. So I couldn't walk five feet without her frantic voice calling out to me. Also, she would constantly be gripping my arm tightly during presentations, reacting to what people were saying by hissing - seriously hissing - things like "Bullshit!" and "Why aren't they talking about poststructuralism??!!" I fought some irritation about all this manic behaviour, but in the end I'm so glad we re-connected and we had a lovely time. I went out for dinner last night with her and her husband and daughter, and we had such a delightful time!! They were so much fun...and the twelve-year-old daughter decided I was the bee's knees, and it was so cute....she wanted to tell me EVERYTHING about her life, in that way that only kids can do...but because she's the child of intellectuals, it also is cut with this sort of sense of irony that makes for a very funny combination. She was all, "When you're in Home City, you should come and visit us and the four of us will go to the Japanese restaurant and we can, you know, chat. [This word, "chat," said in a self-mocking voice.] It'll be awesome." She was adorable.
I still haven't been in the water - it's ridiculous. I hope to go for a dip this afternoon. I am switching hotels, from the conference hotel to a "You only have a 40th birthday once" hotel. After I check in there, and before R gets here, I must find my way into the ocean! Tomorrow - the actual 40th birthday - R has told me she wants to "see surfing, to really understand how it works." So we'll find somewhere to do that - I've rented a car for the day. It is too bad R has some water phobia, because what would be fun would be for her to actually try it. But anyway, it'll be great to see it. And do whatever else her heart desires.
On Saturday we are going to the Big Island, and I will have no Internet for over a week, so this is probably my last post for a while. Have good weeks, all of you!