Sorry I didn't update you yesterday. It was a crazy day and I didn't want anyone to worry. But now that I'm safely home, I can share all of the crazy with you!
The final day of the conference started out early since I had to check out of the hotel and leave my suitcase with the bell desk. Then, it was a quick breakfast at the place near the hotel, a LAAARGE coffee and a shuttle ride to the conference center.
There are a LOT of resources available in the vendor area. Throughout the conference, there were a few books that had been mentioned in several sessions. I had decided that I wanted to pick them up to keep the inspiration going after I left the conference. So, first thing I did was head to the vendor area. On my way in, there was a group setting up in the lobby area to sing. The director caught my eye and I kept thinking, "where do I know him from." It only took me a second to realize that this is the group from Chicago that were finalists on America's Got Talent!! I was hoping to get a chance to speak to them, but didn't get to. I did get a photo, though!! (I also got a video, but I'll share it in class).
On my way to my next session I ran into a colleague who teaches at South Portland HS. He is an amazing musician and teacher, but also has quite a few pieces of music published by the Alfred Co. We went together to watch the US Army Field Band Jazz Ambassadors (!!!!!) play for an hour and a half at a new music reading session. This is where they play about 1 1/2 minutes of about 30 different pieces of music that are brand new. They play several from each grade level of music. Part way into being there, Mr. Skeffington pointed out that we were sitting directly behind Paul Murtha. We have played a LOT of his music at SMS and he was right there!
So, after a wait, they decided that the flight to Portland was going to be cancelled.... WHAT?! Yep. They graciously re-scheduled me for another flight that would have left at 5:40PM the next day! No, thank you. So I waited in an incredibly long line (about 2 hours) to find a flight that would get me home sooner. The best I could do was a flight into Boston that would leave at about 7:10am. They were kind enough to give me a voucher for a hotel room, but I would have had to be back so early to go through security, etc. that I decided it was probably less stressful just to stay at the airport for the night. In a crazy turn of events, I heard, "Mrs Wise....?" while waiting in line. A former SMS student (who had a younger sister in band) was in the same predicament as me. So, at least there was a familliar face. We found a quiet area next to a charging station. Then, I plugged my phone in, turned on Netflix and got comfy (as comfy as one can get on the floor of the Detroit airport) for the night. At about 5am, we decided to get something to eat and make our way to our gate. We were taking seperate flights, so we parted ways at the beginning of "Terminal A." I hope she made it home OK!
I was getting nervous that my new flight would be affected by the snow in Boston. Thankfully, we got on our way (a little later than expected due to a small mechanical issue and the need to have the plane de-iced). Bye, bye Detroit!
Even though the travel home was crazy, I am beyond grateful for the opportunity to attend the conference in Chicago!! I have so much that I look forward to sharing with you!
Sorry this is such a long post-- I apparently had a lot to say (I know you're all shocked by that!). ;) I have some fun videos that I took to share with you when I see you this week and LOTS more to share! I can't wait to see you all!
Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Work hard and be good to one another!