Thursday, January 22, 2009

Boca Grande and Sarasota, Florida

Wednesday I spoke in Boca Grande and Thursday in Sarasota. Susan Luehrs went with me to Boca, which was a great help as she did a lot of the setting up (and packing up) of the artifacts I always set out for the audience to look at before and after a talk. Harm deBlij, the geographer, had been asked to introduce me there. (He wrote the Foreword to my book.) The Boca Community Center had a huge screen for my PowerPoint presentation, and some good questions from the 30 or so members of the audience.
In Sarasota, the event was at the home of Marcia Lang, a sometime Chautauquan. It was a comfortable affair, with about 10 guests. Several of them had served in the Peace Corps, and some guests had traveled widely.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Dress rehearsal

Am in St. Petersburg (St. Pete Beach, really) with Susan and Dick Luehrs, and am not quite warm yet. Tuesday morning Susan and I went to a Thrift Shop to buy a psuedo-baby doll, for demonstrating how an African woman carries a baby on her back. On the phone I'd been told there were no dolls at the shop, but a stuffed rabbit with green corduroy pants sounded intriguing. Ended up getting a teddy bear.

My talk at Eckerd College was scheduled for 12:15 p.m. On Inauguration Day! Not surprisingly, I had a very small audience: six--and two were Susan and Dick, and two were the organizers, Oz and Cathy Scogna.

But I gave the talk, and as Susan agreed, it was a good dress rehearsal with the new PowerPoint presentation, as I found I must go through the pictures faster. The audience enjoyed it and a few good questions were asked.

This evening we went to a travelog at the college, and by chance met someone who was in my class in high school. Neither of us recognized the other or our names, but she knew all the same people I did, so we must have at least been acquainted. I learned there's an annual reunion of all my high school's alums in Florida!