We're on the road again, spending the night in Hippieville en route to Posh Beach Resort where I will soon be learning all about the newest new ideas in the world of academic administration while Curious Girl and Politica play on the beach (although I foresee several beach afternoons in my own future both before and after the conference).
We got caught in a traffic jam today and turned off the highway, threading our way through residental neighborhoods as we searched for a restaurant. We passed businesses with great names--The Organic Mechanic, The Lazy Susan--and ended up eating a lovely meal in a vegetarian restaurant. One house we stopped in front of had a panda in a tree in the front yard. Upon closer inspection, the tree proved to have three pandas. There were stuffed pandas, wooden pandas, painted pandas. Pandas on the lawn, pandas on a bench, pandas hanging from the shutters. "Maybe it's Panda World!" Curious Girl cried.
I like getting glimpses into the weirdness of everyday life when I travel. The Posh Beach Resort is not the sort of place we usually travel to (its website advises that we can arrange a luxury package which will get us the use of a Lexus while we are there!). Here in Hippieville, things seem more familiar, echoes of my college days. We saw a man in a skirt dancing with joy, waving a big tie-dyed cloth, while the drumming circle played in a public amphitheatre. Children danced, grownups swayed, fireflies came out. The mountain air smells sweet, and I'm going to fall asleep very happily (even if part of the happy is drug-induced: I managed to get poison ivy before we left town, and benadr*l is making me sleepy).
It's dark here, atop a small mountain. I wonder what's going on at Panda World now. Here, the Granola family is sleepy. 'night, all!