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Ah, California

I’m in Monterey attending the Internet Librarian 2007 conference. I’ve had a perfectly lovely weekend and will need to send thank-you cards to Walt and Marsha and Thomas and Jenny and Alexis and Marie and Dinah and Gail, and I’ve eaten mmmmmmmmmmmm so many good things, glad I wore nice roomy cords, and I’ve seen Liz and Joe and Jenny and Michael and Aaron and John and Cindi and Jason, and in 19 minutes I’m going to have free wine and noshes and see even more people.

Since Friday at 1 p.m. my online connectivity has been sketchy at best; sometimes I couldn’t figure out how to connect, other times people couldn’t figure out how to connect me, and today I attended most of my sessions in a hotel that didn’t offer free wifi. It didn’t matter (well — it would have been nice today, for live-blogging), because I was connecting just fine where it mattered — with people I care about.

One of these nights I really want to go to Passionfish, and I’m hoping it’s tomorrow since I’m fading rapidly today. I think it’s a good night for a salad in my room and some reading.

It’s also been a good trip for my writing. Walt doesn’t know this, but I drafted a book review in the guest cottage he and his lovely family ensconced me in. Dinah and Gail don’t know it, but I chunked out an essay idea this morning. And I’m not going to mention what conference session finally broke my discipline and had me revising a personal essay, though hey, I’ve been extremely well-behaved (being offline was actually very helpful for my concentration) and have used personal time to read professional stuff — I had a first-class upgrade on the flight from ATL to SJC, and it was both productive and restful.

Meanwhile, I had great writerly/readerly discussions with some of my favorite writing friends — and on top of that had some nice feedback from a writing-group buddy.  Next year, I am coming back for LitQuake — another reason to keep the writing mojo moving.

I’ve decided it’s ok: I don’t need to pretend I don’t love California. I do. I grew up here, I came back here not so long ago and had five wonderful years, and when we’re done in Tallahassee and I publish a best-selling novel or inherit money from a rich relative I don’t remember having, I’m so back here for good. It’s all right to love a place more than you love where you live; it’s not disloyal and it won’t hurt your home’s feelings.

I smell free food!

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