When you start with a 6:30 run and end it with an 11:30 phone call home, it makes for a very long day. Some highlights from Sunday:
After Google Maps listed only Starbucks locations that were behind locked doors in office buildings, I assumed that I would have to order room service to get a halfway healthy breakfast ($14 oatmeal? Seriously, Hyatt?) Instead, while I was out on a rainy morning run, I stumbled across an unlisted stealth Starbucks nestled in a hotel. Being a Peet’s girl, it’s hard to imagine that I get this excited about finding Starbucks, but I don’t know anyplace else that can consistently offer me a cheap, healthy breakfast: perfect oatmeal with nuts, dried fruits and brown sugar, plus a large unsweetened iced tea.
I met a French family at Starbucks. They don’t speak enough English to explain why on earth they’re vacationing in Dallas, but they do have a charming 20-month-old son named Leo. They started out admonishing him for bothering me, but Leo decided early on that I was his new best friend, and we’ve spent two mornings play peek-a-boo, clearly a universal game. When they leave, I say, “Au revoir, Leo!” This amuses and delights him like you can’t even imagine. He claps and dances and lights up from within and gives me a giant wave with both of his chubby little hands. It makes my morning.
This conference is a good one, but I’m not entirely certain that it’s really my niche. My areas of expertise fall squarely between several organizations. I’m not exactly a technical communicator like the people here. I’m not a PR person like those I met at the Health Academy conference (although that turned out to be a closer fit than I’d expected). I’m not a medical writer like those at the AMWA conference. But with each seminar that I attend, I learn a little bit more and hear ideas that I wouldn’t have necessarily been exposed to if I had stayed in my home office.
Yesterday morning I submitted my paperwork to sign up for Team in Training. I’ll be doing the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in October. It’s a steep fundraising commitment, but I’m hoping that I know enough people willing to make a lot of little donations that will add up to the grand total that I need. When you set aside the fear of fundraising, Team in Training sounds like the ideal thing for me, really. I get to help people by raising money and awareness for blood cancer, all while focusing on a regimented training plan.