The reason that I am in Chile is to participate in a meeting that I thought was going to be designed around some fundamental questions that I am really looking at. What I have found out, now that I am here, is that the meeting contains very little of what I want to study. There are many, many talks on things that I just don't care about. Typically, these types of meetings have lots of discussion also, but here it has been very truncated discussions in which nothing is really resolved.
So, I would have to say that this meeting is a very large disappointment. Another disappointment is the fact that we are meeting from 9 AM until 7 PM. We then go out for dinner and don't get back until about 11:30 - 12:00. There is absolutely no free time or time to breathe here. Yesterday was nice since we had an excursion to a valley a bit from here to go wine tasting. I know that most of you would be ecstatic to go wine tasting in Chile. It was a lot of fun (sans the wine), but it would have been much more fun if we had gone into the mountains and gone hiking or something like that. Oh well.
What is he point? I flew for 14 hours to get here and will fly over 14 hours to get home. Everyone thought I should go to experience Chile. And here I am in Chile, but trapped in meetings all the time. I can't really experience Chile.
Here is a question - should the meetings get better and better the further you have to travel, or should they get worse and worse, since you are traveling to someplace exotic? I feel like they should get better and better, since you have to devote so much of your time in getting there and back. I don't think that many people feel this way, though.
So, tonight I have to go to the banquet (which starts at 9 PM - when will it end? Who knows.) I chair a session at 9 AM tomorrow. The conference ends at 6:30 tomorrow night, and we head back to the airport to jump on a plane at about 10:20 PM. Fly for about 10 hours, sit in an Atlanta for 4 hours, then 2.5 hours back home. I really, really hope that the sessions are good tomorrow....
Perhaps I am becoming Eeyore.
Wow, is that depressing. Ok, here are some good things about this trip - I got to talk to a number of people who I haven't talked to in a long time. I think that I am much better friends with these people now. This evening I went out and read my book for 45 minutes on the beach, while tons and tons of people played in the water and worked on their tans. I think that I understand Spanish a tiny bit more than I did one week ago. I ate a mushroom pastry thing without knowing what it was going to be. I finished it and didn't die. I moved / removed over 2000 e-mail messages from my in-boxes. I learned that Vina del Mar has a climate very very similar to LA. It is a desert here, which is pretty. I learned that in Chile, dogs just roam around freely. There are tons of stray dogs.
Ok, I have to go.
2 weeks ago