Saturday, March 5
Over the many years that I have either presented or attended a lecture, I have learned that you have to allow time for setup, especially if you are depending upon the available technology to work properly. Well, for this lecture, I was heavily depending upon not only whatever equipment was available in the room, but my own computer–a two-in-one I had fairly recently purchased for occasions just like that. Let’s just say I was unnerved and not a little pissed that my computer decided to do a 20-minute-long update only 25 minutes before my presentation was scheduled to start without asking me if that was okay. IT WASN’T!!!!
The MLA American Music Roundtable had invited me to give a demonstration of my nearly one-year-old online resource, The Spirituals Database. I talked about how the site was organized and who the primary audience was–voice teachers and singers–plus how its contents could be searched. For my part, I was hoping for ideas on how to better use Omeka, the open-source web-publishing platform I used to create the database and that I am still trying to learn.
Despite the shaky start, the presentation went quite well. I got lots of great questions and several thought-provoking suggestions, especially from a colleague who shares my interest in researching Spirituals. She has published two books on the subjects and was kind enough to chat for several minutes after the session about her experiences.
I’m afraid the only picture taken was one I took while I was waiting for the d*mned computer to update. It was of a sun sculpture that seems to be the hotel’s theme since there are several of them throughout the conference rooms. I was too otherwise occupied to ask someone else to get a picture during my lecture.
The rest of the day was again filled with meetings, so by the evening, I decided not to attend the closing reception. Instead, I ordered room service–the closest I could come to getting food from the five-star restaurant the hotel proudly advertises. I like my steak medium well and was disappointed that it was burnt. But the dessert… Oh my goodness, it was wonderful. I feel like I can still taste the chocolate.
Didn’t realize until after the fact that I only ventured as far as the cafe just outside the hotel door for breakfast. Thursday, it snowed, and Friday, I didn’t have the time. By Saturday, I was just too tired. Sunday would be my only chance to see the city.
Sunday, March 6
The conference was officially over, so my roomie and I were able to get a late start. We had breakfast at a nearby restaurant and packed. I invited her to join me on a visit to the Cincinnati Art Museum, which was a short drive away and had gotten some very high scores on Tripadvisor. Since her flight was not scheduled to leave until the afternoon and I was feeling in no hurry to make the fairly short drive to Bloomington, we were able to enjoy a leisurely visit.
The museum had a very wide-ranging variety of works on display, from early sculpture to modern masters.
Below are some selfies taken with my phone. Nice butt.
We’d hoped to have lunch at a highly ranked BBQ restaurant, but we only had time to smell the food before I had to get Sarah to the airport. After we parted company, I could’ve gone back to that restaurant, but it was to the east, and Bloomington was to the west. So, I used the GPS on my phone to find a different BBQ restaurant nearby and ate there. Fortunately, the smells that met me at the door promised good food, and I wasn’t disappointed with the food’s flavor. I arrived between the lunch and dinner crowds, so I was able to relax and get pretty quick service, too. And I loved the signs they had up in the ladies restroom. My only complaint was there were only two tiny stalls in the ladies room. Only a guy would design a facility that small.
Got into Bloomington, Indiana, with no fuss or muss on Sunday evening. I’d already made the room reservation, so I was in my room in short order. Tried to get some work done in preparation for my visit to Indiana University the next day but didn’t get far. Too tired, and the call of the bed was too loud.