Monday, September 24, 2012

A mix of the sacred and the profane? Yes, indeed.

Things I was reminded of ("of which I was reminded" if Monday has made you cranky and nit-picky) by attending the Kentucky Library Association (KLA) Conference in Louisville last week:

1. The Galt House will always be FFA conventions for me.  My family never went on extravagant vacations (Who could blame ol' Curtis and Jackie? One can only handle so much, "Who brought the skunk with them?"), but there were plenty of Sunday drives, and Friday night Glasgow excursions, and the much-anticipated, three-day Galt House adventures every June.  While Dad spent the day with the FFA students in meetings, or watching talent competitions, or on farm visits, Mom would patiently heed my and Leigh Ann's pleas for pool time, or trips to the Galleria (now the 4th Street Live area), or explorations by the river.  In the evenings, we would all go out to eat (it seems it was often TGI Friday's:)) and sometimes do a horse and buggy ride downtown. In the morning we typically had breakfast in the Magnolia Cafe on the second floor of the hotel, naturally stopping to giggle at the legs in the pool we could see from the large window near the restaurant entrance.

Around the age we started tagging along on the FFA trips...
This past Friday morning, I simply felt happy to be sitting in that same room enjoying my coffee, scrambled eggs, whole wheat toast, and fruit medley.  I love that I remember how excited I felt to be at this hotel with my family.

2. I love my home and I always enjoy coming back, but I also really love spending a few days in city downtowns.  I like sculptures and neat architectural elements.  I enjoy the variety of shops, restaurants, and people.  I love the anonymity. I feel inspired by the intangible energy.  I love river towns and waterfronts.  There's just a part of me that feels "more like myself," stronger, more confident when I walk city sidewalks.
Seriously, go to The Bristol on Main Street.
3. Interstates are handy, but gems are discovered along two-lane roads. 
All taken in Bardstown (Take 65S to the Hwy. 245 exit). If you have time, do the Bourbon Trail!
4. I want to marry Silas House.  I love the tone of his voice. I love his subdued confidence.  I love to hear him discuss motivations and processes.  I love that his voice represents people and places that seem so familiar to me.  I love that his words matter, that they both speak to social concerns and entertain.  I love every outfit I've ever seen him in.
This is a reading from his most recent book, Same Sun Here, which he co-authored with Neela Vaswani.  The young adult publication, which was written in real time (2008), is an epistolary novel that highlights a coming-of-age pen pal relationship between a 12-year-old Appalachian boy and a young Indian immigrant girl living in New York City.  What I love most about the process is that House and Vaswani actually wrote letters to each other in these personas for nine months.  They never spoke of the book outside of the letters until they actually sat down in the same house for three days during the revision process.  Suggesting that "books come alive when you live vicariously through the characters," House described the process to be very "organic," one that necessitated plot twists and a broaching of subject matter that even surprised him at times.

*I also love that when asked about his reading tendencies as a child, House replied, "It's good to have a mix of the sacred and the profane" (a reflection of his time in public libraries and with the books that his grandma let him read).:)

5. Roll your windows down and play awesome music. It's the only way to travel this time of the year.

Seriously, if you haven't bought or downladed this album yet, do so today.


  1. You know I read many of his books last year and I liked Same Sun Here. Have you figured out if he is married or not? Lets work on him for you. Your food all looked great.

  2. And, thank you for donating it to the library, Aunt Carolyn!

    Sadly, he is (otherwise, I'm sure he'd be after me....;)). I'm sure she's smart and beautiful and annoyingly kind.

    It really was delicious. Next time we go see a show, we must eat at The Bristol (it's right across from the performing arts center).

  3. Ahhh those FFA Conventions. You are right in saying they were the only vacations we took when you and Leigh Ann were young. It was amazing to me how those FFA boys took the time to entertain or even look after you little Turner girls. Good memories! I agree with you about the way to enjoy a beautiful fall day. Jumping in the car, windows down and music blaring is my idea of a perfect day. I love finding "little out of the way" places to stop, grab a bite to eat and visit. BTW we still have not made the trek on the bourbon trail. I am ready whenever you are provided it is after October 6th.

  4. I'm sure Anthony Smith and Marty Smith enjoyed our incessant renditions of "don't mess with my toot toot" in the car, too.

    I really did love those trips! You all gave us such good memories, even if we never went very far.

    We will certainly do the Bourbon Trail soon (and roll our windows down and blast the avett brothers).
    Lots of love.