First of all, when people tell you you won't have time to do anything. They're right. You have no idea how right they are. I'm borrowing time from reading stories, which means I'll later have to borrow time from sleeping, just to write this.
Sleep? Ha. I got five hours last night. Then stole an hour and a half nap this afternoon. Starting out this entire six weeks already sleep deprived is not a good sign. My brain is going to be mush. I'm afraid it's already oatmeal.
Writing is almost as elusive as sleep. Oh, not writer's block or anything like that, but I mean.. when's the time to do it? I don't want to be half-asleep while I'm doing it. I feel like my priority should be reading other people's stuff and critiquing it. So by the time I do that, attend classes and other get-togethers, and maybe eat and sleep, what's left for the writing? Well, I squeezed in about an hour this morning and did it. Then wasted another hour printing it. Isn't technology wonderful?
(I'm an IT person saying that, not an English major saying that. Or maybe it's a bit of both.)
The food has already gotten repetitive. We sometimes share the place with other random groups. ResNet Symposium was here. Various orientation sessions. And just some random people and groups sometimes. Sometimes we're alone. I think the orientation sessions may have been dictating the menu a few times. Sometimes entire meals are duplicated. Potatoes remain a near-steady constant. I think there was maybe one meal without any. But then breakfast had 2 kinds to make up for it.
Here's a sample from lunch today:
Fried chicken (vegetarian, didn't eat)
Mashed potatoes (potatoes!)
Mac & cheese (starch, and very weird cheese choice. Didn't eat much)
Biscuits (more starch)
Corn on the cob (vegetable! But.. not the healthiest of vegetables)
Salad (with ranch and cheese)
We were talking at lunch about how vegans would have a hard time, and it's true. Unless you trust the mashed potatoes to be milk-free, which isn't too likely, then you're left with.... well, soda and a banana, maybe. Oh, and the corn, plain. Yum, yum.
So any future Clarion attendees who're vegans, be sure to emphasize it on your application form.
In contrast, we had a lovely spread at the reception yesterday. No.. day before yesterday. I'm losing track of days already. Lots of vegetarian and vegan choices. I can't even remember it all. Cheese and crackers and wine was just the start. Sushi, tofu on a stick, some sort of Asian chicken (I think) on a stick. Dips. Someone said hummus. Some things I couldn't identify, but looked good. Nice desserty things. Fruit. Good.
Jeesh, now I look obsessed with food. Maybe because it's about time for dinner. Always an adventure going to the dining hall.
I have 3 stories to read tonight after dinner. But since I wrote something this morning, I feel a little of the pressure of that off now. I do intend to submit a story a week, and now I've done it 1/6th of the time at least.
I find myself wondering what the Clarion West people are up to and if they're going through some of the same things we are.