IGHR Friday: The Green, Green Grass of Home

This whole week has been so action-packed that I’ve had a difficult time narrowing down topics to write about. I met so many people, made friends and important contacts, and learned at least a small something from each topic covered in the course I took. All that aside, I couldn’t wait to get home. This morning was a short one, and once certificates were handed out, goodbyes said, and the car packed, I gladly hit the road eastbound toward home.

The drive lent itself quite well to rumination on the events of the entire week. I kept replaying conversations, lectures, and maps (there were a lot of those!) in my head, and comparing those to the work I’m involved in now, and the work I would like to do in the future; not just client work or my own research, but lectures I’m developing and articles I would like to write, both scholarly and popular, and other projects I have planned. My mental resolve solidified a good deal during this past week, but I admit to being quite happy to not have to deal with so many live people again for a while.

Am I glad I attended IGHR this summer? Oh, yes, and I hope to attend next year, although I’m not certain which course I’ll try to take. I say try because competition for slots in most of the courses is fierce. Course 3: Research in the South, Part 1, the course I took, filled up in something like seven minutes. Yes, seven minutes. If you’re not waiting at the computer when registration opens, chances are good you’ll be shunted to a waiting list. But which course I try to take will depend entirely upon what happens between now and January, when registration for IGHR 2013 opens.

Driving and thinking and planning. I crossed the state line from Alabama into Georgia, topped a hill to behold Atlanta laid out in all her splendour, eventually made it from one side of the city to the other, and finally, after a long few hours, spotted the mountains of home in the distance. The air cooled as the sun began its descent and the elevation gradually increased. And at last, I pulled into my driveway, under the ancient magnolia tree. The fruit on the peach trees we planted last year has nearly weighed the branches down. The dill is blooming and fills the garden with the sharp scent of pickles. Richard has burgers on the grill and comes around the corner of the house all smiles, and I relax for the first time in a week.

It’s good to be home.

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