Oct 07, 2012: Homecoming month
I've been looking forward to this month for quite a while. I'll be taking two trips—one to Ann Arbor, the other to Moscow—and both involve crossing a fair bit of time as well as space.
The trip to Moscow happens this week (yikes: pack! check passport status! locate winter coat!). I'm keynoting the UX Russia conference and teaching a workshop there as well. I'm also planning on eating as many pelmeni as I can possibly stuff down my gullet. My only other time in Russia was ten weeks during the summer of 1985. I officially was there to study Russian at LGU (Leningrad State University). But let's be honest—I was one about thirty 20-year olds in country that enjoyed its vodka and still happened to find us westerners quite interesting. Yep. That was a really fun summer.
Sadly, my Russian has gone to pot in the 27 years since. I also imagine the place is a bit different than my last visit. But I'm hopeful that they'll be able to hook me up with pelmeni. My introduction to the Internet involved asking rec.food.recipes for a pelmeni recipe in, roughly, 1990. To my surprise and delight, the newsgroup coughed up a bunch in a few hours' time. I haven't looked back since.
Even though I lived in Ann Arbor 23 years and have been back about once per year since moving, I'm still quite excited to be going. I'm giving a talk at my alma mater, the University of Michigan's School of Information, as part of the UM grad program's centennial celebration. Like the Muscovites, SI is rolling out the red carpet, and I'm really flattered. MJ and the kids are coming, and even my elderly parents—both in their mid 80s, and both proud Michigan alumni—are making the trip from Florida. I hope I don't let them down.
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Terrance (Nov 7, 2012)
As men get older, the toys get more expensive.
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