So, where was it that I left off? Saturday morning, I believe. I don't really have much in the way of nerves presenting anymore, but the stress that it had been had certainly laid off a bit. Snarky Writer, however, was presenting Saturday morning and was continuing to stress out over her first presentation (and chairing her session). I helped her do her makeup, and Poe Girl did eventually roll out of bed after an incident with a malfunctioning alarm clock (damn time changes).
SW did present her paper without hyperventilating or having to club other panelists over the head for going too long (it might have been close on the last part), and she did an excellent job, just as PG and I told her she would. We discussed going to the fort and to the beach, but the plans to return to the beach were nixed with a look at the radar. So we ran out to Winn-Dixie and got ourselves some lunch time food (and ice cream) and returned to our room and ate before heading back out towards the shops and downtown St. Augustine, kind of wandering in and out of stores.
Then one of the thunderstorms hit with a vengeance, scaring the living daylights out of people and pouring the rain. We hung out in one of the indoor shop corridors until it mostly ended, then went for our last hurrah at Scarlett O'Hara's, celebrating what had been a very successful trip with alcohol and sweet stuff.
After that, we were ready for naps. Mine was interrupted halfway through by a call from my dad with an update from home that was not particularly uplifting. In any case, that evening, they screened Dr. Horrible's Sing-A-Long Blog and "Out of Gas" from Firefly, and there's nothing quite like sitting in an entire roomful of people singing the "Ballad of Serenity."
We sat around and talked and learned what a small world academia really is--people who know people who know people! Then we returned for one last night's semi-sleep on uncomfortable beds, happy, exhausted and ready to go home to our animals and our own beds. (Hold on to that thought for a minute.)
After a small snafu trying to get checked out of the dorms Sunday morning, we finally packed up and headed out. Fortunately, SW had checked Google Maps again, and we discovered to our chagrin, that we could take I-75 almost all the way from Jacksonville to Chattanooga, avoiding what we had not so politely termed Podunk, Georgia. I should note, SW did not hear banjos until we stopped in East Tennessee for gas.
PG was kind enough to drive most of our way through Georgia, as by the time we stopped to fill up, I was having trouble staying awake, and she had napped some in the car. There was also plenty of swearing at traffic and weather on the trip northward, as well as the obligatory road trip parts: getting stuck in traffic, having a skeevy guy perv on you (or he was getting ready to go through a serious road rage issue, neither of which was comforting), and a stop at Cracker Barrel.
We did arrive home, and I was terribly happy to come back to my apartment. That would be until I got in the door and discovered a broken lamp, a farked up monitor and a full-blown flea infestation. Since then, I have washed all of my bed linens, banned my cats from the bedroom, treated them with new vet prescribed flea medication, combed them out, and bought a flea fogger which I will use in the morning before I go to class. Still, as SW was unfortunate enough to be in her truck this morning when her brakes failed, I will (mostly) cease my complaining and instead give thanks that SW made it to school safely.
And on that note, I am going to go let the freshly treated Cat out of the bathroom in here to play with Bergie, and go to bed.