But at least the conference went well.
I've been back for a few days, actually, but The Hellacious Month That Is June has been interfering with my life in general. I have research students that start working for me tomorrow, I'm behind on my projects AND my blog reading, and I want to know where the hell the weekend went!
OK, so back to the conference. Have I mentioned that I really enjoy attending conferences? This one was no exception. The conference was small, which I prefer since it makes networking and meeting people much easier. I ran into one of the members of my disseration committee there, and heard all the latest gossip from Grad School. Dissertation Committee Member is one of the nicest professors I've ever encountered, and is unintentionally funny, so I really enjoyed catching up with him again. I met quite a few new people and heard a few interesting papers. My own paper presentation went extremely well....it definitely generated a lot of buzz, as there were a lot of questions in the Q&A period and in the break afterwards. So it was nice to get that bit of affirmation about my research work. Perhaps it will give me the momentum I need to start some serious summer work.
The conference was held at a resort area. Generally, when the conference location is somewhere "interesting", Mr. Jane will come with me. But he's also having a really busy month, work-wise, and so he stayed home. In the past, I would have been too embarrassed to go out by myself, eat by myself, etc. in an area where there are so many couples and families milling about. But this time, I really relished the alone time. I ate some very nice meals by myself, and just enjoyed wandering around and people-watching. And it wasn't weird to be alone. It made me aware of how much I identify with being part of a couple, and how much that colors my social interactions, the things I choose to do, etc. And it made me think that perhaps I should work on cultivating my own identity, my own "alone time", on a more regular basis.
I have one more trip this month---a fun one that I'm really looking forward to. It has been strange to be gone so much in one month---especially to be home for an entire weekend. And until this next trip, life will continue to be hectic. But the end is in sight and I know that things will settle down soon. I just need to hope that I make it there with my sanity intact!