Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Poor Neglected Bloggie

I'm writing this post from the airport in Vancouver - I'm on my way home and hoping to do some proper blogging soon.

I've been in Canada for the past few weeks, in Edmonton and in Vancouver, working and attending a conference. See pictures here.

I took 4 days off to drive through the Rocky Mountains - my goodness, it was eye-bogglingly beautiful, scene after scene of craggy cloud-high mountains, all tipped with snow, and conifers and glaciers and bears (well, one bear - hey, I saw a bear!) and elk and a marmot and some long-horned sheep. I went with my dear friend Cressida and we stopped to ski for a day in Jasper (where elk wander along the streets & the rubbish bins are bear-proof). I LOVE skiing, it's totally addictive - I think it's the combination of brightness, coldness, cushioned silence and of course speeeeeeeed. Excellent. Until you fall and sprain your finger or get a nasty ankle-burn, but even then it's worth it.

My conference, transsomatechnics, was rather wonderful too. Cressida and I presented a panel with Lucas Crawford. I had some technical glitches because I over-ambitiously tried to show a series of small extracts from The Swan, Poltergeist, Videodrome and The Ring, silly me, but it was all ok in the end. People seemed to get my idea about "media-bodies" so that was pleasing. I think I'll make it the subject of my next book.

It's hard to choose a highlight from the conference but it was great to meet one of my long-distance mentors, at last, the philosopher Kathryn Morgan. We had some wonderful talks and I now have a new friend.

I was thrilled to also meet Antony Hegarty, who is my all-time favourite singer (I played his bird album every day of 2006, all through my cancer treatments). Antony was absolutely delightful during the performance he gave for the conference attendees - he kept starting songs, stopping after a few bars and telling a little story, then starting the song again. He spoke about his childhood, about the environment, and about gender. He was captivating, modest, humble and very very lovely. If there were more humans in the world like him I reckon we'd all be set.

The only sad note of my trip was that Ruby emailed to say she's found a place to live with some of her friends ... that is, she's moving out of home. I feel bereft. But I know she has to do it, she wants to be independent and of course that's a good thing. But, well, you know, poor me.

Before I went to Canada I had my book launch, and did heaps of media stuff - mostly interviews - radio & a little press. That's me at the top there in the UTS Co-op Bookshop window, with the display that my very talented friend Natalie Coulter made. Isn't she clever? Gleebooks sold out of the book (they'd only ordered 30 copies) on the night of the launch which was very gratifying. It's great that the book is finally out there in the world, doing its own thing - but now I have to wait for the reviews! Goodness knows how long they'll take, or even if there will be any produced at all by the notoriously slowly churning academic world.

Anyway, I have some new ideas for the blog so watch this space...