Wednesday, December 29, 2010
It's On My List
“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” -Susan Sontag
From a dimly remembered visit to California in 1949 (right after his graduation from college, my dad drove cross country; mom & I flew there to join him. I was two years old at the time) to a wonderful trip to Chicago last month, travel has always been a part of my life.
My first tour of Europe came between my junior and senior year of college. Three years later, I was lucky enough to spend some time on the Greek Island of Rhodos (Rhodes).
When our children were small, family trips tended to be shorter and less expensive, although we did make the pilgrimage to Disney World one spring vacation.
Now that I'm retired (sort of), I'm starting to indulge my love of travel again. My husband will join me occasionally (this year, we went together to Puerto Rico, Ohio, and Maine), but the conferences I attend without him always include friends and friends-to-be with whom I can associate.
This was my 2o1o itinerary:
January - EduCon (Philadelphia, PA) - my favorite gathering, a relatively intimate and always stimulating series of conversations
March - Dorado, Puerto Rico - my husband's sister and brother-in-law were kind enough to invite us to visit them at their winter home, a small but pretty condo within sight and sound of the ocean
June - ALA 2010 Annual Conference (Washington, D.C.) - this was my first ALA conference, offering the perfect opportunity to meet with some of my library colleagues and tour our nation's capital
July - Ohio (and the Schinkers in Queensbury) - we went to visit some online friends, and some other online friends came to visit us
October - U.S.S. Hanson Reunion (Portland, ME) - another first, as we attended a reunion of those who served on the Hanson, including some who were shipmates of my husband's during the Viet Nam War
November - SLJ Leadership Summit (Chicago, IL) - this was a gem of a gathering, sponsored by the School Library Journal: authors and illustrators and speakers, oh my
These trips were more than just sightseeing jaunts, although that was part of their charm. Three of the six were conferences; all involved connecting with people. Transforming acquaintances into lifelong friends and learning partners; blending virtual and real life, personally and professionally: that is what travel does for me.
In 2011, we're hoping to visit Puerto Rico again. I may travel to Buffalo, NY in May for the SLMS/NYLA Spring Conference. I plan on seeing Philadelphia in winter (EduCon) and summer (ISTE 2011). There's AASL National Conference at Minneapolis, MN in October; I'd love to fit in another SLJ Leadership Summit, if there's no scheduling conflict. And wouldn't it be fun to meet up with the student members of "my" photography club (and co-advisor, Shannon Miller) in Van Meter, Iowa!
When I created this little map of my journeys, I noticed that the U.S. West Coast, the Southwest, most of the Midwest, and a large part of the rest of the world, aren't represented. I need to do something about that.
“Clay lies still, but blood’s a rover / Breath’s aware that will not keep. / Up, lad: when the journey’s over there’ll be time enough to sleep.” -A.E. Housman