Friday, April 3, 2015

Laissez les Bon Temps Roulez, y'all.

In other words, I'm in New Orleans at the Popular Culture/American Culture Associations' national conference. It should be noted that early April is apparently a lovely time to visit, as it's warm but not hot, and the air is humid, but doesn't feel like you're trying to breathe honey. It's day two of the conference (I presented morning of day one) and I've seen a lot of really insightful game studies and gothic panels, as well as one that was possibly the most valuable to me, on using Native American cultures and literature respectfully and usefully in the classroom.

Although the conference is ongoing today, I am spending it in my room, away from all the lovely panels and the book dealers. This is because today I hit the "like hell" wall, by which I mean my body, without checking with me first, decided it was done with the people and the noise and the weird chairs and pretty much any dairy whatsoever. I was retaining a lot of water and my blood pressure was up and my feet hurt and my attention was shot and whenever I contemplated going back into the fray, my body's response was, "like hell you are." And then I'd sit down on the bed again.

This is one of the things I really hate about my autism and my getting-older-body and my general introvertedness. I am here to conference, and I want to be conferencing, but instead I am taking a break from the conference to be in a quiet space and relax for a bit, in between venturing out for food and drink and a bit of walking around (because really, this is the best place for food and drink and walking around I have ever been. Ever). That said, I'm having a fabulous time, and I feel better for all my refusing to venture down. I am having a me vacation that is truly lovely, in between all the other stuff I'm doing, and in part it's because I'm listening to myself when I need a break, which is a good and proper thing to do.

Oh, and the other stuff I've been doing:

  • Ate at the Acme Oyster House -- fan-freaking-tastic, people
  • Ate at the Green Goddess, which caters to everyone from vegan to omnivore -- also amazing
  • Looked at masks (all on sale at the end of Lent, go figure)
  • Had roughly Si's weight in oysters, mostly raw and occasionally fried
  • Learned that some restaurants are better than others, but I really haven't had anything bad here. That's what happens when you can't throw a rock without hitting a different place to eat. 
  • Walked along the Mississippi river at moonrise, in the cool of the evening, with a lovely breeze blowing the sounds of music along the water's edge
  • Had a coffee and beignets at Cafe du Monde, which we strategically went to in the evening when it was cooler and the line wasn't horrid
  • Saw the St. Louis Cathedral and Jackson Square with the sunset behind them
  • Walked the streets of the French Quarter, finding something new to ooh and aah over in every direction
  • Seen the craziness that is Bourbon Street, even on a weekday during Lent
  • Been accosted by a purple-wearing, golden-faced clown who was very gallant up until he found out we didn't have cash for a picture with him 
Tomorrow we're taking the streetcar down through the Garden District to the zoo, I think. Either that or I'm going to the Pharmacy Museum and maybe look at old houses. Either way, I'll feel better doing that for having rested today, otherwise known as taking it easy in the Big Easy (I couldn't resist).