Yesterday was a frenzied…

Yesterday was a frenzied rush, with kazillion little things that needed to be finished before leaving town, including the artwork for Joe Haldeman's Tiptree award. It all got done, somehow (in part by several phone calls being rescheduled for later this week), but it was definitely something of a blitz. Kev was a prince, doing as much as he could to help in various ways. I helped him carry in his very very heavy new grill, so his helpfulness was only fair. Did I mention that it was very very heavy? Oh, he is so happy with his grill, with his plans for steaks, steak salad, steak sandwiches. It is adorable. Me, I am happy that it is a pretty shade of blue and therefore looks reasonably nice on our terrace.

Now safely in Vermont, having arrived on time and with my luggage, for a change. (Deeply suspicious me did not check any luggage, just in case.) It was lovely arriving at dinnertime, rather than in the middle of the night. I got to chat with people, snag a last little bite of dinner, attend the opening faculty reception (which had incredibly yummy grapes, the best I've had in years; I just stood by the cheese and fruit tray and ate grapes for an hour, at least), review some of the workshop stories. Peaceful, pleasant. And the weather is not nearly as bad as I'd feared, though it is still notably warmer than I'd like. I slept fine with a fan going -- well, mostly fine. I did wake up a few times in the night and noted that yes, the mattress is still just as lumpy as I remember. But otherwise, slept fine. Another night like that, and I might actually feel rested and normal again.

The weather this morning was very pleasant, walking over to breakfast, and today's schedule is light -- mostly orientation meetings and chatting with students. It's awfully nice to be here and not be sick; I think this time around may actually be a lot of fun. I'm particularly interested in paying attention to what makes this program so successful (they turn away a *lot* of applicants, and their students often go on to serious publishing). When I get to Roosevelt this fall, I want to have some ideas on how you grow an excellent MFA program. I will watch, and learn.

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