Monday, September 24, 2012

Hoke and Miss Daisy's Got Nothin' On Us


Over the week-end I attended The Southern Women Writers Conference at Berry College in Georgia, north of Rome, to which "all roads lead." Yeah, sure.

The college was founded in 1902 by Martha Berry. Spanning more than 26,000 acres, Berry College is the largest contiguous college campus in the world. How anyone ever finds it is a mystery to me.

The theme for the 2012 conference was “Beginnings and Endings.” Speakers and presenters explored the concepts of both literal and metaphorical “beginnings” and “endings” in a variety of ways. I read my short story, In a Land That Is Fairer Than Day, published in Ordinary and Sacred as Blood: Alabama Women Speak edited by Mary Carol Moran from River's Edge Publishing.
'


If, in the picture at the top of the page where I stand in front of the beautiful architecture of the college, I appear to have bags under my eyes and a somewhat stunned expression, that may be attributed to the hilariously harrowing journey of the day before in which my sister, Susan Cleveland, and I lost our way big time! According to the map and driving instructions, it's a little over two hours from Birmingham to Rome, Georgia. And we both were totally acquainted with the fact that "all roads lead to Rome," so what could possibly go wrong? The two hour trip took us a little over five hours. Maybe more, I honestly don't know.

There are no words adequate to describe what all possibly could, and did, go wrong. Well, actually, it was just my sister and I who went wrong, at every opportunity; sometimes forging our own opportunity, into, out of, and back into The Twilight Zone. If there was a wrong turn within miles of us, we found and took it, at one point making a large backwoods-scenic circle and ending up precisely where we had been one hour before.

Then we honed in on a bucolic boulevard that looked promising enough, which delivered us to, I kid you not, Booger Holler. That's what the road signs said. I believe it was precisely at this point when our ever-constant radio accompaniment was blaring "Take the Long Way Home." We also were serenaded by "Slip Sliding Away," "Going to Carolina in My Mind," "I Wish I Was, Homeward Bound," "Welcome to the Hotel California," and "Still Crazy After All These Years."


But, we did eventually find ourselves on the expansive Berry Campus, met the Berry deer and Berry cows, made it to my session on Friday morning without a hitch, I read my story, and all was well!


I must at this point say "Thank You" to my Hoke of the Day, sister Susan Cleveland, for the rapturous and (seemingly) endless road trip to Rome.


12 comments:

Susan @ Blackberry Creek said...

We aim to please, Miss Daisy.

Susan @ Blackberry Creek said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joanne Cage said...

Too bad you didn't have Hoke at the wheel--although some folks think Susan is prettier. At least you know where Booger Holler is (approximately), next time you need to go there.

The College must be a beautiful place. Love the deer.

Ramey Channell said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ramey Channell said...

Joanne, I feel certain that Hoke would have taken a more direct path! And, you're right: the college campus is wonderful, except when you get lost in the nethermost regions while trying to get off the campus.

Steve Clarkson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steve Clarkson said...

Blogger Steve Clarkson said...

I looked at your picture and smiled (because I always do), read your "trip report" and laughed (a lot), then looked at your labels for this blog and rolled in the floor holding my sides to keep them from splitting! YES! Booger is one of your labels! All booger searches will now find your blog?~ Steve

Ramey Channell said...

Yes, Steve, all booger searches will find my blog! I just hope the boogers themselves are not doing the searching.

Sun Singer said...

Having driven from Atlanta to Rome and from Atlanta to Birmingham many times, I can see where things could go wrong. At least they stopped going wrong when you got to the campus.

Malcolm

charmainegordon author said...

Delightful post. I enjoyed every word including all my favorite tunes. So apropo for the trip and to be with your sister, a special time. Thanks.

Ramey Channell said...

Malcolm, this thing of getting lost at every turn is new to me! Except ... when I was a little kid, my daddy got lost on Peachtree Street every time we went to Atlanta. There's something about Georgia...

Ramey Channell said...

Charmaine, Thanks for stopping by with a comment. So glad you enjoyed my excursion into the Georgia Twilight Zone!