We’re off to one of my favorite places in the world: The Island That’s Also a Smile, the Place What Got Ice Cream on Anne of Green Gables’ Nose, or as I call it, “The Place So Much Better than New Brunswick”… Prince Edward Island, CANADA!
Tessa and I actually spent our honeymoon in two places: Monhegan Island, Maine and then up the coast to PEI, where we had such a good time that we came back for the incipient Zap Your PRAM conference that October. Five years later, the same fine folks are having the conference once more, and despite being three thousand miles farther away, we had to go.
I dunno, I think it’s important for two reasons: one, you can’t reduce everyone in your circle of friendship to the virtual. A cabal that exists entirely on email or Facebook is a cabal that will disintegrate without proper buttressing, and we totally dig our PEIers.
Secondly (yes I know that’s not a word), there is something to be said for taking a seemingly-strange trip to an island far flung on the other side of the continent, to talk about esoteric subjects you may not entirely understand, about a future that hasn’t happened yet. The last time this conference got together in 2003, the discussion touched on how we’ll store information, where blogs were headed, the ethereal quality of data, what the virtual world means to normal people, and the history of what’s to come – and if I recall correctly, we got a lot of stuff right.
But my reasons to go are a little more goo-goo-ga-ga than that. To me, if you’re someone who relies on creativity for a living – and that goes for more of you than you might think – you have to put yourself in the way of bizarre ideas. You have to be blindsided, slightly, by subject matter you’d never find or seek on your own volition. It may not always work, but just dipping your head into the cold, bracing water of other peoples’ obsessions can occasionally give you something you didn’t even know you needed.
Off to Montreal tonight!