Last night I struggled home (or to the hotel, at least) after the AERC 2009 pre-conference yesterday that was facilitated by my colleague, Matt Eichler. Here it was, 4:00 in the afternoon, and I had recently gotten a headache greater than any I recall experiencing before. It was so bad it put me to bed, finally to get up a bit after 10 pm (even without dinner, good gods!). The pre-conference was excellent (with Andre P. Grace, Tonette Rocco, and Kathy King, among others, how could it be otherwise?). The papers and presentations were all wonderful (I liveblogged them, of course), the conversations were good, ideas were shared, research interests were focused, and new possibilities were considered.
With such a good day, what happened? Perhaps back-to-back conferences are taking a toll on me? Perhaps the heat in the room (how I abhor sitting in a constant oppressive hot room, it recalls getting bronchitis a few years back in July) contributed? Anxiety with a third paper to present literally in a week’s time period? Maybe the work I am doing with the doctoral class I am teaching at Pace University right now and is mostly being facilitated by my teaching partner (Lucille, you are wonderful!; everything else stops for me this weekend, and then I can fully attend to our class to give you a break)? Perhaps my head just could not take any more new ideas that I could employee a room of research assistants to help me realize? Perhaps I am just learning too much too quickly?
As I am getting ready to leave for today’s session, I take consolation in my planned reflection and recharge this evening—I am treating myself and will visit the Art Institute of Chicago. Art always makes me feel better and renewed, especially when it comes with free admission after 5:00 tonight!