After I posted about my arrival in Kansas City the other day, my friend Todd, who used to live there, complained that I wasn't blogging enough about his former city. He sort of had a point. When I went to the Hamptons in March or visited North Carolina in late August, I blogged every day I was there about the places I went and the things that I did and the weird and wonderful sights that I saw, but when I got to Kansas City this week I arrived and then went silent.
There's a really good reason for that, though: Until the last night in town I pretty much only went to the places that I'd already been to the first day.
I got my steps in the morning by walking around the War Memorial Park next to the hotel:
watching the sun come up over Kansas City:
over Union Station:
and over the giant yellowjacket, now completed:
All of the rest of the time I went to conference sessions, stayed in the hotel during breaks, and went to meals with my fellow conference attendees:
because, as I explained last year when I went to a conference in New Orleans, that's what I was sent here to do: Focus on making the most of my conference experience. I think I accomplished that, as I have a bunch of notes, a couple of books to order, and some followup to do with people that I met, but in order to do that I pretty much never left the vicinity of the hotel.
Until last night, when my old friend Lisa arrived to rescue me.
The conference ended yesterday afternoon, in the pouring rain. Lisa, my friend that I used to ride the bus with in 8th and 9th grade before she moved away (that's 24 years ago, for people who are wondering), and her husband, Ryan, came to pick up my friend Meghan and I at the hotel and show us a little bit more of Kansas City before we had to fly out. I'm so glad they did, because we had a fantastic night, and then found out that it was even more generous of them because today is their anniversary, so we pretty much crashed their anniversary dinner.
I had such a good time that I didn't even take photos for most of the night.
We went to a German restaurant for dinner, which was delicious. I had kasespetzel (spetzel with cheese) and a dessert that I don't remember the name of but was basically fried donut holes with a poppy seed filling, and Meghan had German food for the first time ever as our sarcastic waiter mocked her pronunciation and the rest of us laughed. Then we went on a driving tour of Kansas City, in the rain, where we saw giant sculptures of shuttlecocks and a house with a life-sized Pillsbury Dough Boy in their front window, peering out at the road. Then Lisa and Ryan took us to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, a huge museum in downtown Kansas City that was both gorgeous and free of charge. We only had a few hours, so we stayed in the modern wing rather than the older European wing, but it was still a great night and an impressive museum:
After they dropped us off, I went upstairs to pack and go to sleep, and that was it for Kansas City.
I'll try to blog more from California, so as not to offend the friends that live here.