kc and her fellow Canucks storm the National Council of Teachers of English Conference in Philadelphia, PA....
The story begins before dawn on a rainy, West Coast pre-dawn flight to Phoenix, Arizona. Much flying ensues.
Also lots of waiting.
But finally, West Coast sunrise leads to East Coast Philly airport. More rain. [This is the airport tower in the dark and rain, which looks MUCH cooler when seen through actual eyeballs, as opposed to a grainy iPhone shot...]
More waiting, as fellow-traveller Lee Edward Fodi was stranded for six hours in Houston, due to nation-wide travel computer glitch.
Interesting note: there is no food in the arrivals area of the Philadelphia airport. Also no free wifi, rendering stranded author entirely unable to catch up on email from frantically emailing travelling companion.
But all was finally well, and the two Canuck writers were
reunited in time to go to a 24 hour bar and eat veggie wraps.
After a couple of hours of sleep, the intrepid authors met up with friend and colleague Lori Sherrit-Fleming,
and put on a rocking demonstration of how to use other modalities within the arts [drawing, music, drama] to entice children into and enhance the experience of becoming life-long writers and readers.
After which there was much walking around the conference floor, meeting up with old friends and signing books with new friends [this is Lee with author-illustrator Jerry Pinkney and author Malinda Lo].
All the while, the Very Busy Kari Lynn Winters was tearing up the turf in Prince Edward Island on the final day of her CCBC Tour. [Evidence that Kari Lynn is secretly a human whirlwind: this week ALONE, she flew to the Maritimes, did 16 gigs on her tour of PEI, flew to Philidelphia, attended the NCTE conference, plus a few other gigs thrown in for good measure, flew home and just yesterday was awarded the title of Doctor of Letters when she successfully defended her thesis in a 21/2 hour examination. WooHOOO! Let's hear a cheer for Doctor Kari!]
And yet... when she did finally arrive, she somehow managed to stay still long enough for me to photograph her with an ice cream cone on her head.
Mint chocolate chip, I believe, if you want to get technical.
Kari, Lee and Lori celebrate by actually sitting down together!
Other weekend highlights included a ghost walk... [in which we spied the remains of the ancestors of one of our missing friends in the McCann Family Vault], a trip to the Philadelphia Portrait Gallery [second largest in the United States only to the one in the Smithsonian],
....a wander around a very cool old bookstore with this amazing tree out front....
...its roots gnarled and growing around the old bricks from the road...
...and a visit to the Franklin Institute, loaded with lots of steampunk arcana [very helpful for the new book].
We topped the trip off with a palm-reading session,
complete with crystal ball [VERY illuminating -- note stack of US Magazines neatly placed close to hand...]
AND a Guerilla reading on the steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum.
But this last event has earned its own post...so hang on tight and you can read more, very soon, my pretties!
[And if you'd like to see more of the pictures in detail, you can check out the Philadelphia set on my flickr page.]