Monday, I headed out to visit one of the branches. To get there I usually get on I-95 and go a couple of exits before heading down to the streets. When I did that, I suddenly realized that I had not driven on a limited access highway in over two weeks! It was almost un-nerving.
For those not familiar with I-95 in Bridgeport, it is an overcrowded, very high traffic highway which has been undergoing re-construction through Bridgeport since 1998! Someday it will be done, I hope. For this project they are widening the shoulders, installing new dividers and re-building every bridge. Of course, every bridge means most of the road through the city. As part of my drive to work in the morning, I am under parts of it as it goes over the harbor, train station, and stays above ground for almost a mile. It is quite a project.
Yesterday evening, I left the office to go to a meeting at a different branch. It was cloudy, gray, and humid. (Actually a little bit of a relief from the unrelenting sun I had during my two weeks in Chicago.) When I got to the branch (in the north part of the city), the sun was shining (and I regretted that my sunglasses were in the back of the car). Leaving the meeting, the sun was still shining, but the clouds to the east were ominous. They stayed that way. After a quick dinner I headed out to some errands, driving further east as the clouds glowered even more threateningly. Finally at about 9, it started to mist. Unfortunately that is all we got, and while it is cooler today, it is still humid.
I have had several emails from ALA friends, and think that we are all in the "ALA Post-Partum Blues." For many of us, we get to spend some concentrated time together working on important issues, thinking thoughts about the big picture and enjoying working hard on the process. We get to vote and make decisions. Now we are back home. For me, that means the every day realities of things like building problems, staff issues, and even a less-structured schedule. While we email back and forth between conferences, that personal contact is really important. I am looking forward to seeing how ALA's community software works. I am very much in favor of having technology help us to do our work, but this "blues" I am feeling are clearly related to a sense of missing the personal interaction.