My extreme and sincere apologies for having maintained blog silence since my arrival back to home this past Tuesday. Jet lag, re-entry, schedules, plans and relationships gone awry – all that, and just plain tired to pieces.
So I took a break. Not a long one, because there were, and are still, student papers to grade, bills to pay and obligations to be shouldered. But just a little at a time, with time between to rest, recuperate, re-evaluate and resign myself to the vagaries of time and turmoil and my sometimes struggling little ADD self. At this point, one hears the still, small voice of God, or maybe Pema Chodrin, saying, “Ok, break’s over. Back at it.”
I’ve spent today trying to put back together what fell apart so badly on this trip, at least the parts I’m able to fix. First, the student papers, which were emailed to me, and which I was to edit, comment on and return so they could be put into their final version. Nope. Didn’t happen. Oh, they sent them, but on those few times I was able to access email, none of them would open.
Same for the blog posts. The only way I was able to get anything through was to draft a version in longhand, copy it into Windows “notepad,” copy it and paste into an email to Sarah. Sometimes it went through, especially at the first of the week. but as time went on and more festi-goers arrived at the hotel and fired up their wi-fi’s, iPhones and Blackberries, the signal became more and more erratic. Then the computer evidently got tired of being told what to do (you’d expect that from a Mac, but Dell?), Notepad got harder and harder to find, and sometimes would spit out what was written on it before it could be copied. And did I say the internet connection on the hotel computers relied on a password that worked, theoretically, for just 30 minutes at best. Sometimes the opening page took minutes to load. Then to find your mail program, then you’d plug-in address and content, then be told times up, and oh, by the way, we didn’t save that post. You’ll have to do it over.
I named these sessions Computer Hell right from the first. To no avail.
Anyway, enough kvetching. (That’s right, Margaret, I’m back to Yiddish again, and I’m not even Jewish. Sometimes it’s the only thing that works.)
I am glad and grateful to be home. Computer hell or no, the experience was absolutely splendid, and I’d do it again, and hope I get to. You know by now that we cleaned up, award wise. We also made friends that we intend to keep, and sampled the best of the Piedmont region, that claims the best wines of Europe, the elegant cuisine that is a blend of Italy, France and Switzerland, and is the sole source of both the white truffle and Nutella. We tried it all. Now I’m probably going to blab about it for months. Don’t worry, though. There will be recipes.
First, though, I’m going to send to Sarah the posts that never made it through computer hell, and that have only existed, until now, in longhand, written in the wee hours by lamplight, in the far country of the Romans, the realm of the House of Savoy, the tiny kingdoms of Turin, Alba and Asti.
You may notice that I never made it to Georgia. I never had time to miss it. Stay Tuned for the rest of the Torino Story.