Friday, October 9, 2009

the wrong day to wear jeans

oops. Not so good at this being grown-up and dressed-up thing. The English department hosted a conference on Caribbean literature and since I wasn't presenting and I wasn't teaching, I thought casual dress day. It was raining, too, and getting around by rickshaw in the morning does nothing to encourage me to dress up nicely. However, everyone there looked like they were dressed for a formal affair, a wedding, at least. The women wore saris -- my students were all incredibly colorfully dressed and clearly shining! My Mounds View Swim and Dive shirt was just not the right choice!

The keynote speaker, Dr. Sharmila Sen, of Harvard University's Press, gave a very interesting talk about the Bangali Mishti (sweet) connection to the Caribbean sugar trade with the emphasis (always, here) on a post-colonial interpretation of the texts. Other speakers presented on poetry, cricket and lungis. Most of the talks were in English, though not all.

The ride home took forever, but it was nice to be able to talk to my colleague, Lisa, about teaching for almost half of the ride. We don't usually overlap in ride time.

Today I opted out socially: no plans. Read a book from New Zealand called The Bone People by Keri Hulme. Talked on Skype a lot last night and today. Went out for one hour's worth of errands to the commissary (they had no LIFE cereal!) and otherwise allowed myself a whole day off. Ok, did some laundry since it didn't seem to be raining, but, of course, the rain came later! Tomorrow the aquatics class and then the conference continues in the afternoon with a showing of Pirates of the Caribbean and a discussion after.

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