Sunday, November 11, 2007

14 days

That might be a record. And not the good kind I suppose?

Actually, my last post was #777 - I just wanted to savor the luckiest of lucky numbers for as long as I could. Okay, not really.

Alrighty then. NYC was a great trip/conference. I got my poster done on Thursday morning. We took the train up to NYC Thursday afternoon. Nick and Jason decided to be original and take a bike taxi (the kind with the little carts behind the bike) to our hotel; the rest of us took taxis. We went to what would be dubbed "cart man" for dinner - Landon and I got cheese steaks, and everyone else got gyros. There was a keynote speaker and the first poster session (that nobody from our lab was in) and some food (but definitely not dinner, so it was a good thing that we had eaten beforehand).

The conference continued on Friday, and I presented my poster that afternoon. I was actually amazed that I ended up talking to almost 20 people about my poster, and nearly all of them said that they thought my research was very interesting. It was a pretty nice pat on the back, so to speak. After the rest of the sessions, the whole group of us went out to eat at Agozar, a cuban restaurant. We were having trouble getting cabs, so Rhoda (in her Rhodariffic way) hailed a charter bus. Oh yes. Anyway, we all got to the restaurant and had awesome tapas, drinks, and food.

More conference Saturday, and then the students weren't invited to the SMR banquet. So Amena and I were placed in charge of coming up with dinner plans. We ended up getting reservations at Kin Khao, a Thai place. Not to be outdone by last night, Amena hailed us a limo for $5 a person. Rhoda had given us a $360 budget and said we could spend it however we wanted; since we had only spent around $275 on dinner, we went to a liquor store and got a couple bottles of wine and had a great time sitting in one of the rooms watching TV and talking.

We came back on Sunday. We were originally supposed to be on the 1:05 train, but we got to the train station at like 11:45 and Rhoda (again in Rhodariffic fashion) decided that we all needed to change our tickets to the 12:05 train so we could get back an hour earlier. We went back and forth between the line, ticket counter and the people standing with our luggage, and at one point someone said "well, we'll get our tickets just in time to miss the train, and then at least we'll have an hour to change them back." But we amazingly made the train with about 4 minutes or so to spare.

I got home around 4:30, and I had a couple hours to do some laundry and swap out my suitcase and such. I went out to Robert and Jodie's place in Manassas for the night, and drove down to Charlottesville on Monday. Dad at the hospital at 8:30am, and he was still in the waiting area when I got there a little before noon. They called him back about a half hour later; mom went up with him while Daniel and I sat around, and eventually got some lunch. Mom finally came down around 4 and told us to go up and sit with him, because she was starving. Dad finally went into surgery around 4:30 and was in for about 5 hours. In the meantime, we got dinner at a pizza place called The Mellow Mushroom, which was pretty good.

I think the PACU nurse felt bad for us, because she let us come up to the post-op recovery room for about 20 minutes or so. Dad finally went to his room at 11:15, and we left the hospital around an hour later. Long day. But the surgery went well, all things considered. The surgeons told us that based on the gross examination, there was still cancer in his larynx (and they took out half of his thyroid as a precaution). They originally told him he'd be in the hospital until the 12th, but he went home Saturday evening.

We spent pretty much most of the day Tuesday at the hospital, and I came home on Wednesday. The rest of the week has been pretty low key. Matt and I went to Let's Dish yesterday and then to Target to get stuff for our Operation Christmas Child boxes. Also, I had two reasonable college pick'em weeks (36 last week and 42 yesterday) so I'm pretty well cemented in my lead by 32 points. Oh, and the VT game was craaaaazy! Good times. We also watched the Maryland BC game as well.

Well, that should be everything. I hope things should start to calm down for a while before the holidays - we're leaving for Massachusetts in (ack!) 10 days. And then it's Jim Gaffigan at the Warner Theater, Christmas parties, shopping, baking, and the holiday flurry.

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