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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

a street car named...

The big accomplishment of today was that I got on a streetcar and made it where I wanted to go and back without getting lost. Having spent my entire adult life in Santa Fe, I often feel slightly impaired when I'm in anything resembling a city because I really don't know how to negotiate my way around. Sometimes people assume that, because I am originally from the East Coast, I have some innate city smarts. Those people (assuming there actually are people who spend five seconds thinking about this) are wrong. First off, I was a teenager when I lived on the East Coast, I didn't drive and while I could, in fact, manage to get on a train, that was about it.
Anyway, the Portland street car was very easy. Portland is quite pretty, lively and cityish, but not dirty and overwhelming. And it's pretty temperate, although I did have to go buy a jacket, having not brought one, having realized, as I packed, that I only own winter jackets and no spring or summer ones. Today, I hopped the streetcar and went to Willamette Week, the sister paper of SFR, to check out their HUGE digs. It made me have building envy, frankly. Then I spent the afternoon in a membership committee debating the merits and flaws of the 19 papers that have applied for AAN membership. This was an interesting endeavor, although kind of exhausting. I'm not super great at four hour meetings. I always think everything in the world should only take half an hour to decide. Tonight I'm having dinner with the AAN board. In the morning, I'm going to visit my friend and predecessor, former SFR editor, Audrey VB, in the hospital, as she had her second son last night. And then the conference starts. I'm sad to have missed tonight's SFR Block Party, but the reports I'm getting are that it was a smashing success.
There's always next year, assuming the conference doesn't again conflict. Next year the conference is, in fact, in the town in which I grew up: Philadelphia. There I'm sure I'll get lost, if history is an indicator of anything.