Over two weeks since my last post... time to put the "KT" back in "Rebecita and KT blog from afar." I just got back from yet another jaunt to the Eastern Seabord, this time to attend my very first conference: the annual NARAL Affiliate Summit. Being a novice at this sort of adventure, I spent the week leading up to the Summit agonizing about such things as whether or not my outfits could pass as Business Casual, how many business cards I should take with me, and whether or not I could sneak out half an hour early on Sunday to make an earlier train into Baltimore, where Sandy had invited me to spend the night with her. (In case you're wondering: I was better dressed than half the attendees, I didn't use a single business card, and I actually ducked out three hours early, making me the second-to-last of the five Texans there to leave. Note to self: Next time, agonize about different things.) Each of the 30 or so affiliates sent 1-5 representatives; added to the 25-30 people from our national office who were present at any one time, we made a nicely-sized - not too overwhelmingly large, not too pathetically small - bunch. It was really great and affirming to meet so many different people from such completely different places who are all working together for the same important thing(s). And since I'm so thoroughly clueless about all the abstract parts of my job (fortunately, they need me mostly for the office-monkey parts, but I can't help but feel that I'd be a more valuable asset to our fast-paced, highly political nonprofit organization if I knew, um, anything else...), the workshops and lecture sessions were (almost; let's be honest now) all really interesting and helpful.
I'd also like to report that I managed to duck out of going out drinking with co-workers and new acquaintances on not one but TWO consecutive nights: Friday night involved bed, pajamas, and "Something's Gotta Give" on cable tv (silly, totally enjoyable, and only reinforced my undying love for Diane Keaton), and, as if anything could trump that, Saturday night was bed, pajamas, and "The Miracle Worker" (that's right, everyone's favorite black & white Helen Keller story starring Anne Bancroft and Patty Duke).
Sunday night I took the train to Baltimore and met up with Sandy for an afternoon of crepes and the American Visionary Art Museum, which is possibly the most incredible museum I've every been to. Definitely top three. Oh my god. Carly, do you love this place??? It was unbelievable. Basically, the idea (for those of you too lazy to follow my link!) is that it's a museum devoted to art by people who've never been formally trained. So it's crammed full of all these amazing pieces - matchstick sculptures, intricate pointilist paintings on used paper plates, historical portraiture on bedsheets, costumes, collages, miniatures, carvings, junk art, clockwork tableaux - made by old sick men in nursing homes, roadside prophets from the deep south, the mentally retarded, people with obsessive-compulsive disorder, regular folks with boring day jobs who just come home at night and do their thing, whatever that might be. I couldn't walk three feet without stopping and gaping. In conclusion, you should go. Yes, you.
Nothing too exciting happening these days chez K&R... I'm officially enrolled in my "intensive" (and I use those quotes with only the most good-natured of elitist sarcasm) 10-month Associates Degree program in Early Childhood Education at Austin Community College. As Dan never neglects to mention every time I bring it up, at this rate I'm well on my way to receiving a high school diploma. But it's free through the preschool where I work, and I plan to do SOMETHING education-y with my life, and I figure this is a low-commitment way to figure out if I'm ready for another degree, or if I just want to keep avoiding degrees and the jobs that require them for the rest of my life. The jury's still out on that one. I'll keep you posted.
Bill & Quincy donated Bill's old gas grill to us, so we invited them over for an inaugural grilling last week. R now has the opportunity to impress me by doing such things as 1.) lighting the grill and 2.) cooking raw meat whenever he wants. All he needs is an undershirt and a beer in his pocket and our Texas life will be complete. I'm hoping to re-start yoga classes this week after a 6 month vacation, during which I've done as much sitting still in chairs as I could, as if to ensure that my re-entry into the yogic realm would be as painful as humanly possible. Bah. I finally bought another Decemberists album so I can finally stop compulsively listening to "Picaresque"; in other musical news, I sucked it up and indulged in a ticket to the Joan Baez show in October. I haven't seen her since the RS/D&T tour in April '02 (Jenna says: Wait, people went to that show to see someone OTHER than RS or D&T??? At least you can sympathize with the number of awkward encounters I WON'T be setting myself up for by going to her show alone in Austin rather than Noho, eh?).
My summer goals: Redevelop my guitar calluses, start packing myself lunches every day, write more letters on paper, and get myself a Texas driver's license. Everything else can wait.
Miss you all!