Sunday, September 24, 2006

Returned from Old Dominion State to Garden State

September 24 in the waning hours, back in the garden state

It was a long, long drive, most of it in I-81, all those great views of green farms and Blue Ridge in the background. I listened to lots of tapes and was remarkably alert after a groggy first hour or two (see the wee hour one a.m. note below). I was fine after I had breakfast at an Omlet Shop, a sausage and egg sandwich on toasted white bread! I promise that’s the end of my very bad eating! I had a salad for lunch, and Andy made pasta with red sauce when I got home.

Five #$%!! deer waiting for me in the back yard, the young ones gamboling again. They had not been in my garden, but the slugs have-- they've eaten most of my lettuce. I have some started in pots that I hope I can save for winter and spring salads.

Someone at the conference-- I think maybe Denise Giardina-- offered to bring up a dozen friends with rifles to cull the herd and take the meat back to people who could use it back home. I like that idea! It was so good to be with someone as deeply ethical as she who doesn't see deer as Walt Disney tear jerkers but as animals who as a group would do far better with some predators in their lives.

Thirty miles from home when I got caught in a forty five minute traffic jam from a big accident, medical helicopters and the whole thing. But I’m home now, and I think the parakeet said “Taxi!” I’ve been trying to train him to call a cab or say his name or whatever that would mean.

I’ll have to do my debriefing in the morning– it was a truly wonderful conference-- moving on so many levels, to hear the voices of Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia home, a few from the far south.

September 24 in the wee hours

It's after midnight, and the conference is over--what a couple of days! Utterly amazing. Lunch with Maggie Anderson, and Phyllis Moore was my dinner date for the banquet, at which we had a great time with Maggie and Anna and their friend Jeannie, and George Ella and Ann Olsen and Denise Giardina. I wish I were a real blogger like my brother-in-law-- I'd have been sitting in the readings and panels with Trusty Toshiba on my lap, noting down all the neat ideas from the religion panel this a.m, our Tall women panel (Maggie, George Ella, me, and Sharyn McCrumb), the readings-- oh my. So many conversations. Finale a generous party at Barbara Kingsolver's terrific rebuilt and expanded farmhouse. I had fun learning about the tricks of driving and writing about NASCAR from Sharyn McCrumb.

Now I have to get a little sleep before facing the enormous long drive tomorrow.

Special fun moment: WV crew having our photo taken singing "The West Virginia Hills."

Mercy upon us.

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