I’m back in Storm Lake after a brief trip to a slightly bigger lake, the one they call Superior.* I attended the 5th Bienniel Feminisms and Rhetorics Conference, this being my 2nd bienniel attendance. The conference itself was was great. While there, I got to do the following:
–visit with friends (professors and grad students) from Bowling Green State University
–co-deliver a paper without having to dodge rotten tomatoes (they were nice and fresh)
–graciously give my new business card, all shiny and Ph.D-y, to a still-in-grad-school woman from UNR whom I really, really dislike**
–tour the upper peninsula of Michigan, looking for likely places to barf
Barfing, or the possibility thereof, was the overarching theme of my trip. The flight from Omaha to Minneapolis was in a small plane and they sat me near the back and we had a rough landing and I got off just. in. time. I was so relived when my bile subsided after the flight that it didn’t even occur to me to buy Dramamine, and the plane from Minneapolis to the wilds of Michigan was even smaller and they sat me in the very back. The entire flight, the plane did a credible imitation of the rear of a conga line. Again, I got off just in time. And those of you who know me will understand just how icky I felt when I tell you that I didn’t eat any dinner that night.***
Saturday night, after the conference ended, my buddies and I decided to take a drive around the upper peninsula. I asked if the road was winding and was told yes, but I didn’t take it seriously….I’m from the edge of the eastern Sierras and I equate seriously winding roads with dramatic gains in altitude. The mountains of the upper peninsula might be foothills in Nevada if they ate their Wheaties. So off we went.
I started to think about barfing after 30 miles or so, and thought about it continuously for the next 4 hours. Skipped another meal when we stopped for dinner at a quaint restaurant (okay, I had a slice of pumpkin pie — I’m not made of stone, people) and shortly thereafter secured some children’s chewable Dramamine. I was too sick by that time for the Dramamine to do much more than coat my mouth with chalky, faux-orange flavor, though, which tastes even nastier with a hint of bile and pumpkin pie.
So that was my trip. Conference, good. Friends, good. Snotty graciousness, good. Upper Peninsula, pretty but sickening. Children’s Dramamine, chalky. Flights home, better. Home now, going to bed.
*Next to Lake Adequate, Lake If You Must, and Lake Aren’t You Ashamed of Yourself.
**Yeah, I’m petty like that. And it felt wonderful.
***I can always eat. And sleep. And talk. If I’m not doing at least one of those things at a given time, check my pulse.