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California it is!

So we made it to Des Moines by way of Springfield and Champaign, where we visited the Lincoln Museum and UIUC GSLIS–both were in fine form. A beautiful building makes me feel smart and important. I had a great education at GSLIS, but the old building was a bit weary and cramped.  

Note to current GSLIS students: because the library-science library is now housed in the GSLIS building, you may not be aware that there is a relief of Katharine Sharp in the graduate library, near the former location of the LIS library. Rub her nose and she’ll bring you good luck — with jobs, tests, whatever. (Though perhaps not so much with driving.)

In Des Moines, Sandy went back to Florida for a denominational meeting, I gave my talks (hello, Ellen, Jessamyn, Karen, Louise, and others!), and then I plowed through Nebraska, Wyoming, a chunk of Utah, and Nevada. Within that cohort group, Wyoming won the “I feel pretty” contest hands-down (it reminds me of New Mexico, except flatter), though the wind was so stiff I thought I would fly away when I stopped to refuel.

I was all prepared for a heartwarming moment when I crossed the California state line, but I-80 had some horrible curvy concrete chute going on for several miles that had me sweating through the winter coat I dug out of the trunk, so the defining emotion as I crossed into my home state was relief. Perhaps that is apropos!

Now I am at my sister’s place in Truckee, catching up on computer-based tasks and laundry. My iPhone has been a great help on this computerless trip–from email-reading to finding motels–and I already have about 30 apps on it, including one for finding farmers’ markets in California. I am also faster on the keyboard than I was two weeks ago. But the keyboard is still this machine’s weakness. I’m happy with the iPhone, and with AT&T service, but the keyboard is inefficient. Doug’s analogy was clever, but I think off a bit: it’s not like making music without a bow, it’s like picking a guitar with mittens on.  Eventually you get better at it, but only relative to mittened musicmaking.

So with the mittens off, I’m catching up on the big stuff! I drift westward tomorrow, and start my new job this Friday.  Eventually Sandy, Dot, Emma, and our stuff will drift this way as well. West!

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