It is Columbus Day, you know he was lost - didn't know where he was. He was likely not the first European to "discover" what we know as North America - he was brave enough to publicly defy "common sense" and sail west across the Atlantic knowing he would find land. There is something for being brave. I have read his logs of the trip. His description of the people he encountered was very degrading - he thought them barely fit to serve as slaves at the same time they were kicking his crews' ass (holding some of them prisoner.) I don't really understand a national holiday in honor of Columbus.
Columbus Day is a day off. I am normally in Lexington visiting my sweet bear this weekend. But I have a couple of massively busy weeks ahead and the bear has a special decennial-birthday coming up the first weekend in November - so I am going to Lexington for that instead this year.
Wednesday is the annual partners meeting for the project that funds 80% of my work. There are five grantees in the project. Once a month we have a conference call, once a year we meet for a day in person. The money is here in DC and has difficulty traveling, so we always meet in DC. The five partners take turns organizing the meeting. But only two of us have meeting space that works for hosting. Actually my office conference space is the largest and most accommodating. I provide the space and one of the other partners plans the agenda and pays for lunch. I also organize and host monthly conference calls for all of the partners.
Thursday and Friday I am hosting a National Conference. I have mentioned this in the past, again to keep the content of this blog, from becoming the intellectual property of my employer, I can't mention the name of the conference. Putting the Conference together has been a massive project, starting last December. We have over 140 people registered, we would be well over 150 but we ran out of space. The attendance projections were maybe 100 people would attend. We went with a venue that holds 140 maximum, and sold out six weeks before show time. We have an agenda of four plenary sessions and 19 workshops. There are about 70 speakers, some new voices, and a couple of superstars. I have a MacArthur Genius award winner as a speaker (pain in the ass I will never work with her again - she has no idea what a deadline is - let alone how to meet one.) I have two high ranking government officials, an assistant cabinet secretary and the second in command at a federal bureau. It will be two long and intense days. Oh, and J and I's anniversary is on Friday.
Next week we have our quarterly board meeting, that we hold three times a year. Only a bunch of lawyers would hold a quarterly meeting three times a year. And then on Saturday I interview students for next summers' internships. I need to finish that process up and make offers before I can leave for Thanksgiving in Florida.