Alone in a Crowd

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I’m in the Lou. St Louis that is for my sorority’s national convention. So far this trip hasn’t been the best one and I’ve found myself questionning why I broke my neck to be at THIS one. Of course by the time I complete the question in my mind, I remember the reasons I told myself about being at this convention and I suppose it makes sense that I thought those things when I booked my flight.

Getting here was the absolute worst. The hubby and I got a little cocky about how much time it would take to get to the airport. So we woke up, worked out, finished packing and got in the car to get to the airport with about 55 minutes b4 the flight. Well… Thanks to a misguiding sky cap, we ended up waiting on a “trouble ticket” line for 40 min (there goes my flight) and had to spend an additional 110 dollars to secure a seat on the next flight out which was a full 6 hours later. After I threw a mental tantrum, I recomposed myself to the notion that now I’d be able to complete all that I’d run out of time to do: manicure / pedicure; shop for white shoes; get my toiletries etc. All the while spending more time with the hubby ?

So we began towards the city, feeling resolved and comforted that there was a silver lining to all of this. As we waited our turn to pay the toll at the entrance of the Midtown tunnel, an airport transportation van that was directly in front of us fancied himself wanting to just…. Back up. Fast. And onto the bumper and hood of my car. We honked and yelled and couldn’t understand what the hell he was thinking but there we were – in the midsts of a car accident. Luckily, about 6 police officers at the gate were our witnesses so we’re totally not at fault. But it cost us another hour or so to detain the guy (um, yeah, cause he was going to drive away) and write up the report. We still kept a light heart. We got to the city where I luxuriated in my long overdue mani pedi then went shopping for white shoes and a carryon bag to pack add’l items in. By the tinme we were done, it was 1:30. Next flight was at 6, but we flew out anyways. I didn’t want to take any chances. Got to the airport around 2 and checked in and cooled my heels till the flight which left on time, was uneventful and quiet.

Upon arriving at St. Louis, I got a cab and traveled to my hotel. The cabbie was wonderfully pleasant and reminded me of Daddy. He gushed proudly about his two boys who are graduating – one from high school and one from college. He was from a country right in the area of Darfur and was making his life and living with his family in the Lou.

Got to the hotel and sought out my chapter. They were hanging out and cutting it up as I expected which put me at ease. The next day was the first plenary and I was ready.

Now… The post about Boule and all the happenings won’t take place publicly on my blog. All I can and will say is that based on the events of this conference I can submit with all assurance that 1) I will NEVER, as long as it’s in my power, miss another conference. 2) if I can help it – I’ll always be a voting delegate. 3) the happenings in session were worth every penny of the 1600+ dollars it took to get me there (not including the shopping it took to get me looking the part). No one could have EVER narrated with sufficient detail and emotion all that took place over this past week. Worth. Every. Penny.

Unlike past conferences, the prevailing feeling for me in the beginning was lonliness. I spent a LOT of time on my own. I ate breakfast alone every morning. Lunches were usually the same with the exception of a few instances. I remember conference time being very busy with visits and hang outs and suite parties hosted by me and sights to see and folks to visit. But… This one was so quiet. The only people that shook up the alone feeling for me were Sharon and her total willingness to drop everything and cool out with me upon request and an impromtu visit from Tiff who hung out with me and we chatted for hours, then danced and strolled at some parties and then hung out till the wee hours of the morning talking some more, drinking cocktails and eating bad food. In a big way, any other time I had to spend alone didn’t feel so bad after that. Yet again, leave it to my original team mates and true heart sisters to unexpectedly and even unintentionally save my sense of sisterhood and closeness. Thanks, Tiff and Sharon ?

Well, I’m on the flight home now and I cannot wait. I miss my hubby and his skin. I miss NY water and how it doesn’t completely irritate me. I miss knowing where I want to go and getting there of my own volition. I miss the ability to identify crazy in my own home town (cause crazy does NOT look the same everywhere). I miss my mommy and her pictures so I can stop thinking that BAM resembles her and agonizing over that. I’ve not been so homesick in so long and I really hope I have a while before feeling this way again.



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