Okay, so the worst of the crazy is over for this week and I will attempt to catch up, going all the way back to Sunday, which was my second day at the conference. I got up extra early on Sunday because I had realized I had a dilemma. The conference went until 5:00 on Sunday afternoon. Checkout time at the hotel was at 11:00. This meant I had to check out before I left for the day’s classes, but in the meantime, what would I do about my luggage? I was very worried about it, especially since I had my electric cooler which was keeping my insulin chilled.
I packed up all my stuff and then called the front desk to explain my problem. The lady there told me that the bell staff had a room where they would store my luggage free of charge until I called for it. Phew! She transferred me to a bellman and I explained my problem with the cooler. I said it could function as a normal cooler if we could put ice in it. He assured me they would be happy to plug it in once they had it in their storage room. So, problem solved! A bellman was at my door almost instantaneously and everything was beautifully taken care of.
I crossed the street to the conference with a load off my mind. The morning’s classes were excellent, and I did a lot better at staying alert even though I hadn’t slept that well the night before. That’s the weird thing about my life these days. There is rarely a provable correlation between how “rested” I am and how exhausted I am. I just have these days of overpowering exhaustion and there is no obvious reason. It may be a side effect of some of my medication.
We had another excellent lunch with gluten-free food clearly labeled. That makes everything so much easier for someone like me! After lunch I made a beeline for the lobby and sank into one of the deep armchairs. This being my 12th conference, I have learned something about myself, and that something is that I need to take a break on the second day. By lunchtime on the second day my brain is full to overflowing and I need to give it a rest. The class period right after lunch didn’t have any classes that I felt I simply must attend, so I sat in the red chair, put my feet up on the ottoman, and took my Sunday afternoon nap right there in public.
After that I was rested and able to enjoy my afternoon classes. One of them was on self-promotion for introverts. Boy, did I need that one! I decided to skip the final session as I really wanted to get home before dark. First, though, I made a pass through the vendors’ area. Now I’ll be honest and say that up until this point I had all but ignored the vendors. I didn’t want to spend a bunch of money, and some of the vendors were selling stuff that I found mystifying at a writers’ conference. Bed linens, for instance. I did get an adorable handmade book ornament. But for the most part, the vendors were more or less invisible to me.
Then, during lunch on Sunday, one of the organizers encouraged everyone to check out one particular stall—two teenaged boys who were trying to sell their artwork. I admit, I was curious. What kind of artwork? What kind of teenage boys think of having at booth at a writers’ conference? By the time I finished my last class and was headed out the door, most of the vendors had already packed up, but I found the two boys manning their booth to the bitter end.
The 17 year old boy was a glass artist, and was selling blown glass vases and other receptacles. His work was stunning, my friends. The 18 year old boy was a ceramic artist, and was selling handmade cups, vases, bowls, and bottles. All were beautiful. I am such a sucker for handmade pottery. So anyway, I stopped to admire their stuff and to tell them how gorgeous it was, and I bought this lovely little vase/bottle.
I admired them so much for making these lovely things and then going out to try and sell them. I asked them, “Have you ever thought about selling your things at Renaissance faires?” They both just gaped at me before saying, “No! But that’s a really great idea!” Ideas are my stock in trade. They were so tickled. One of them said, “That’s the only good idea we’ve heard all day. We’ve heard lots of really dumb ones though.” Those guys were great. I hope they get into some renfaires and make a killing, because they deserve to.
Before going back to the hotel, I wandered through the Fort Worth Water Gardens for a few minutes.
These lovely gardens are right next to the convention center.
I’m not sure I’d enjoy them much in the middle of summer, but on a warm April day they were enchanting!
Look at the vivid green of those new cypress leaves!
Then it was back across the street to my hotel:
And sure enough, my cooler had been kept plugged in and the valet got my car and everything was fine. I headed for home, taking a much more direct route than the one I’d taken on the way there, and stopping for supper on the way. Boy was it good to get home!