Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Dust Bunnies

“I think it is perhaps best if Soror Marcia visits the Solarium with me,” said Thalassa with a sweep of her robes of office.
OK, out of context, this may not be as funny as it was at the time, I admit. It was a relief, too. My friend Thalassa has had too many hits on the not-funny side of life lately. The fact that she can determine that my character is in need of removal from the room to a sunnier spot where I can do less harm is, to my mind, a spark of hope in an otherwise bleak few weeks of stunning losses of dear ones to her. Her humor here is no sign of disrespect. It’s a spark of sanity that she will be OK, at least in time, in spite of Death’s calling card too near. My friend needs hugs and laughs and adorable pictures of creatures with cute little nosies and a little sunshine. My friend needs a break from people dying and the job market being the pits.

In our Salon of, well, I was going to say misfits, but everyone there is “properly placed in their present position,” a term I used to snark at when used in corporate performance reviews, we have fun. It’s a group of friends who are tarot readers. We like to have fun and even though we consider our studies, our reading, our interests and our businesses in tarot serious stuff, we poke fun at taking things too seriously without poking fun at any person or organization specifically.

In our Salon, we are devotees of divination, which isn’t a joke since we actually are, but in the Salon we are perhaps over the top in tradition, ritual, magical properties, heritage and, in the latest turn of fun, the newly revealed never-before seen photographic evidence of the extended fictional family purported to be the foundation of our fervent “secret society.” After all, if you talk about it on Facebook, it’s not much of a secret, right?

In our imaginary Salon, we have celebrations that go on for too long, toasts that leave the revelers toasted, old scandals hinted at, new scandals barely avoided. Or not. It’s one of my few forays at role-playing because I’ve never been into the chat room alter ego before.

With all characters there in some basis ourselves with a twist, I play some version of myself mixed with my first piano teacher Mrs. T and a lovely optimistic version of Miss Havisham I met when I was a child accompanying my mother on a hunt for antiques for her shop. Add gin, and serve. I don’t disguise my real name although lots of people do in the magical world of the internet. I’m just me, well, sort of, and all these other people a bit too.

Mrs. T wore sweeping jersey shirtwaist dresses cut on the bias, an easy-breathing, swirl of print fabric over a generous frame. She had a voice something like Meryl Streep’s version of Julia Child and towered over me as I once again proved I had not practiced my piano lessons for the week. Mrs. T liked all her students to have an annual recital and dress in costume for the show. I loved my costumes, one in particular was a long brown dress, cap and apron that harkened of Pilgrims and Thanksgiving turkeys. The piano playing was the turkey for me and I learned that my particular form of stage fright occurs after I’ve gutted it out through the ordeal, curtseyed and strutted offstage, only to faint dead away backstage. The show must go on, after all. Mrs. T’s world was just a little fluffier and more floral than the real world and I suspect she tippled a bit after a long day of piano lessons with truculent brats. I was never sure I liked her, but I was pretty sure she did not want me to know who she really was either. I was a job to be done, however grudgingly. The jersey print dresses were rather dreadful. It all added to the ambiance. The key to Mrs. T for me was the swirl of the skirt and the dogged way she stuck to her idea of appearances and the show going on.

Miss Day was my happy, not spiteful, Miss Havisham. She lived in a world that was dusty, old, preserved and not quite decaying. What once had been splendor had turned into something more like the asylum walls. Every possible surface within her vast apartments was encrusted with Cracker Jack toys set in some hardened matrix. It was like a LegoLand of little bits of childhood forever frozen and covered in draping strings of dust. It was wonderland. Miss Day was what we might characterize now as being a little “out of it.” I think that’s a little unfair. I think she was so “into it” that she never quite came out again. She was gracious and airy, with effortless Victorian and Southern manners. We drank tea in porcelain cups set on a shadowbox table full of tiny toys, perched on worn velvet and horsehair fainting couches, loveseats and chairs. It was the kind of place you were meant to wear gloves to and yet, due to the dust, you’d take your gloves off at once to save them.

Miss Day was charming. She had a high melodic voice that drifted off into reverie so that Mother had to reel her back in every so often. She wistfully showed us a framed remembrance of her family, an intricate braided design made of her mother’s, her sisters’ and her aunt’s hair in all the family colors, light and darker and a little red thrown in. It was gruesome fairyland, these strands of lost loved ones, memento mori.

If I put those two women together, sweet, damaged, mannered, cultured, asynchronous, anachronistic women whose vision of the world had swerved another direction from their own expectations, and added a generous dollop of gin for “medicinal purposes,” I find my character in our Salon. She fervently believes but has become lost beneath the divan for several days after a particularly boisterous ritual celebration, her jersey dress tangled beneath her ritual robes, tripping up her sensible shoes. And under the divan, among the dust bunnies and cat fur that has piled up over time due to unclear responsibilities for such mundane duties as cleaning that characterize the Salon, The Common Room as we call it, she finds a little inspiration.

And so I have, and I present to you my latest deck of cards, not a tarot this time but a relative oracle deck called The Dust Bunny Lenormand, a 36 card deck of gently humorous Victorian images, now available for $20 plus postage. When the scraps of this world may not seem to make sense, it can be in the least likely places we find insight. Let our tired minds and hearts rest from the effort to make patterns of the pieces of our lives, rest and come back to love another day.

Best wishes.


*Contact me via email if you are interested in obtaining a copy of The Dust Bunny Lenormand. Gin not included.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Wings and Feathers

Jason Hawes, one of my favorite TV ghost hunters, posted a note about the angst of fathers of teenage daughters on Facebook today regarding his daughter Hailey.

I had to laugh when I saw this. I remember my father’s reaction to my dating. It was never positive.

Oh, he liked this one guy I dated in college because the guy was older and knew Dad through some engineering classes. The guy worked at the radio station and flirted with me on and off. He wasn’t too tall and looked Dad in the eye when he talked to him. He went so far as to toe the ground with my Dad to ask for my hand in marriage, believe it or not, lovely old-fashioned manners that my parents just ate up. Several weeks passed after that happy moment with no correspondence from him through any means. Finally, I picked up the phone and called him.

“I think we made a mistake,” he said.

“I think we did, too,” I said, relieved.

And that was it. No, harm, no foul. A few speculative shopping trips to jewelers and bridal shops. My grandmother was confused that no wedding ensued from the encounter, but other than that I was good with the whole thing. It made sense that, if I weren’t devastated, I hadn’t really been in love. What I marveled at, though, was the enthusiasm my parents had shown for the guy and his parents in me.

I know it sounds like being left at the altar, but it wasn’t like that. We just called off the game before it became a huge sunk-cost financial and emotional loss. It’s always better to weed out the wrong ones in the interview process. He was a nice guy, just not my guy. I think that’s what he had concluded about me, too. Or, something. It didn’t really matter to me. I wasn’t devastated, period. And this was the guy my parents liked. That was always a mystery to me.

There’s nothing I wanted less than a level-headed romantic relationship. I wanted the kind of thing that made Daddy get out his shotgun and polish it, just because he could sense the attraction. That was a good thing, in my opinion, confirmation that the right chemistry, at least on some level was going on. For all daughters who complain that like Bill Cosby’s comedy routine their fathers insist on “four pairs of long overalls” when they go out, I have to say that most of the time those fathers just want to spare their daughters the sorrow of being very close to someone physically and discarded quickly, broken-hearted. Also, most of the time those fathers just can’t stand what they imagine is going through the prospective beau’s little lizard brain either, recognizing vestiges of their own lizard brains.

They are the King of Wands, the guy who understands impulse and the tendency to shoot first and ask questions later. They see themselves in the young man’s lack of impulse control and don’t want their little cupcakes anywhere near the effects of that lack of high mental faculties, consciousness of consequences or even belief that tomorrow follows today. They don’t want their sweetums to get stuck with an idiot that she will have to deal with the rest of her life and therefore they will have to deal with the rest of theirs. This protective, defensive and sometimes hostile reaction to Buffy bringing home Spike to meet the fam is as much a biological imperative as, well, the one that looms as Daddy’s biggest Unthinkable.

Dating isn’t easy. They always talk about those first awkward attempts. I remember attending a dance at 15, spying a young man seated sullenly by himself, piecing together that he must be the older brother of one of my classmates and giving in to my bubbly extravert nature. I walked across the flashing, blaring dance floor and sat down next to him. He had brown hair that fell over his forehead. He had blue-green eyes. He had a few freckles across his nose. He had broad shoulders and scuffed boots. He was already silent and at my presence, looked at me bug-eyed a moment, terrified at a girl who would make the first move presumably, and sat there the rest of the dance. I spoke to him a little. He answered in monosyllables. By the time the dance was over, I figured he hated me or was shocked but I was a little pleased at the freedom of not waiting to be asked. We did not dance, but I’m a lousy dancer anyway, so I didn’t mind. It seemed like a successful venture, but I figured I wouldn’t see the guy again.

The next evening, however, something remarkable occurred. He showed up at our front door unannounced and needed help. It seems he had run out of gasoline and wondered if we could assist him. This ruse worked, although everyone knew the score. It was a safe evening’s adventure, complete with giggling and glancing that passed for advanced flirtation 40-some years ago. Well, then. Apparently I had not offended the diamond in the rough as I feared.

It was a tempestuous relationship that lasted much longer than my parents had hoped and ended abruptly and badly. I think every young person should have such an experience so they know what wrong is, but I don’t regret the experiment. I was left with a stronger sense of self and understanding of human character and a fading few burn marks on my calf from the over-heated exhaust of his rebuilt Benelli motorcycle.

Fast-forward about 25 years and I am no longer a teenager but Daddy is no less the King of Wands. I have brought my beloved soon to become husband home to meet the fam. I may be no Buffy, but John’s no Spike. Nevertheless, The Conversation occurs.

“Wings and feathers,” my feisty little father muses looking off the back deck into the oak canopy.

My husband listens attentively, not quite sure where the conversation is going but with growing understanding of my Dad’s ferocious nature.

“That blue jay,” the Colonel said, nodding toward the dappled afternoon sun through the trees. “That blue jay did not have to tear that titmouse’s nest apart that way.”

John agreed certainly, uncertainly.

“I just got out my shotgun,” Daddy cited the make and model number to impress John who is impressed an altogether different way, perhaps the more important way, “and there was nothing left of that jay but wings and feathers.”

“Would anyone like a drink?” my sweet-natured dear step-mother interrupted before anything else happened.

“Yes,” John said. “Yes, I would.” And we went inside with greater understanding that neither the King of Wands nor his daughter would ever age in this story.

Best wishes!


The Dust Bunny Lenormand is here! $20 plus postage. Please email me so I can give you the best rate.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Marcia Has a Point

I really was (and still am) that girl who wants to be loved for her brain and not her body. The cats and dog think this is a silly reason to be loved, of course. After all, a warm human is just the thing on a cool night, just like the application of a 15-lb. feline poultice is an excellent cure for a knee addled by arthritis or a mild chest cold among the non-allergic. There’s plenty of me to love, from the cats’ and dog’s points of view. I’m the cuddly type, especially for creatures with a couple of eyes and a nose.

Mother despaired of this trait in me when we wandered into a mall petshop and I nearly melted with joy as a Pomeranian puppy happily gnawed on my finger.

“If the boys knew that’s all it took, you’d be the most popular girl in town,” my mother quipped in an unusual display of humor about sexuality. That was The Topic Never to Be Discussed.

“Yeah,” I gushed in my usual display of searing intelligence, and let the widdle cute-ums gum away for a while longer. I was an easy mark for the finger chomp thing, at least amidst the small and furry types. I did of course have my standards for suitors of the human variety, but at that moment I couldn’t think of any. I was helpless in the jaws of love, if only puppy love.

No, I wanted to be loved for my brains, specifically my left brain. After all, that’s what my mother taught me was the thing that lasted, beauty being skin deep. I knew I had some hurdles to overcome. After all, I’m blonde. Yes, yes, straight off the drugstore shelf, but I was originally blonde before the curse of the dishwater attacked me and then later this funny patriotic stars-and-stripes thing I have with my nearly-whites coming in. A lovely woman in an elevator with extraordinary hair with its natural lightning-lightening told me we call it the “Crown of Wisdom.” There ya’ go. Even my hair is trying to enhance my brains. They have to be in there somewhere, right?

I spent a good deal of my youth trying to draw guys’ eyes away from my undeniably ample chest, undeniably ample even when the rest of me was, uh, more streamlined than the current silken layered, luscious, soft-hearted creature you may know me as now.

“Yoo-hoo,” I would bend my head, smile and wave. “I’m up here.” Subtle, eh? C’mon, guys, there’s a time and place for everything and I was trying to have a conversation here. Back then, apparently so were they, but it wasn’t exactly with my mind. I would laugh. I would get angry. I would try to analyze it. I would counteract the effect with fashion disguises. I would assume The Tone of the cold scold. I would point and laugh. But the fact was, I just wanted to exchange some intelligence.

Per my loving husband, that seems to be the fatal flaw, the presumption that a hetero guy when presented with the presence of a biological reminder of primitive urges can actually be considered intelligent. Well, zeesh, I seem to be able to speak to people in spite of their long, dark eyelashes or broad chests or well-muscled thighs or even a tight-fitting wardrobe. Viva la difference, they say. Maybe I should have had that Pomeranian chomp a little more often to remind me how I can melt into a puddle of unintelligent ooze, spewing baby-talk to a creature that does not speak my language.

Still, we all manage to get our work done somehow and I can still point out a logical flaw in a computer or business solution now and again and pat myself on my back for not thinking of kittens or baby turtles at the critical moment. And, every once in a while, I like to get peer recognition for it. The words I long to hear are, “Marcia has a point.” It’s that joyous moment when I get some kind of feedback that I made sense, that it may have added to the conversation and moved us all a step closer to solving the whatever- it-is we are working on.

My favorite work moment like this happened a few years ago at a company that will remain unnamed.

I was being screamed at by people who were frantic to solve a customer service problem that was, in their eyes, a technical issue that I was being “stubborn” about.

“Unfortunately,” I explained for the third? fourth? time, “the system requires that the user sign on with their Social Security Number.” Note: this was a few years ago for all of you who just suddenly got bug-eyed at the violation of privacy and use of personal, non-public information that could be snatched by identity thieves. The system has since been remediated, reformed, rehabilitated and repentant about the requirement and has an alternative solution. But, as I say, this conversation was before that.

“But people in the Bahamas don’t HAVE a Social Security Number!” the little darlings screamed at me. This conversation was in a large meeting, well-attended with many otherwise intelligent creatures who were all tired, urgent, frustrated and ready to strangle me.

“OK, you could get some numbers for these folks that aren’t really Social Security Numbers and use those, but you would need to make sure each of them knew their number. Don’t Bahamians have some kind of number?” I wasn’t melting under the pressure, but I was trying to think outside the box. That’s the box that the magician sticks knives into while the girl inside keeps smiling, that box.

“Wait,” logic overtook me. “Isn’t this supposed to be a U.S. domestic site only? What are Bahamians doing trying to sign on in the first place?” And then, the kicker, maybe my favorite sentence of the year, “You folks do realize, don’t you, that the Bahamas are not part of the United States.”

A hush fell over the large crowd of urgent, tired, intelligent, angry people. A small voice in the back, like a child pointing at the nude emperor with the Ace of Swords, the sword of truth, rang out just loudly enough for everyone to hear.

“Marcia has a point.”

My ears turned red. I tilted my head back. I breathed deeply. Finally!

They all agreed, scuttled to fix their business, not computer problem and I was released from torture. I got my B.A. in English and my B.S. in Applied Computer Science for a little geography lesson that changed a business direction away from potentially larger business issues towards a solution.

The meeting was over and I smiled down at my chest. “Lefty rides again, eh, girls?”

Best wishes.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Readers Studio 2012 Part 2

When we last left our weary traveler, she was trying to shrug off an almost-all nighter and seem sprightly and fit in Shawn Nacol’s Tarot session, the second of our three main presenters at Readers Studio 2012. Shawn is such a kick. You’d think elemental concepts like hot and cold and wet and dry would be light and easy. Shawn’s presentation made something that might look at first like a kiddie ride turn into rockets to the moon. I love his lightning-fast pace, even with a throbbing headache and “patriotic” eyes (that’s red, white and blue). I quickly caught up on the half-hour I had missed and though I did not have a partner this time, I worked through the exercises that were part of his class. It was good solid stuff, and just what I had hoped for, witty, fun, fast and deep. I knew I had to save his comprehensive notes for a time when the brass band in my head wasn’t competing for real estate with my thought patterns.

Mary K. Greer graciously asked me to have lunch with her and we were joined by James Lee and Joan Iris Eisenberg. The lunch conversation soon turned to sociological and financial cycles with a lively discussion between James and Joan. I soaked it up along with my lobster bisque and the bit of sunshine through the window.

After lunch I retreated to the bar for some lighter fare and was treated to fun and crazy conversation with Thalassa Therese, Barbara Oliver, Paul Nagy, Lon Milo DuQuette, Bob Place, Elizabeth Owen which featured Thalassa’s rendition of “Smoke on the Water” in her best Ethel Merman voice. Somewhere about the time when I was pretty sure we were going to put together a chorus line with Lon, Paul and Bob in “Sparky-the-Wonder-Bat” thongs, we were about to go back to the main room for our third presentation. Truly, a picture would have been worth a thousand words here, maybe two thousand, but alas it was not to be. Perhaps another time!

James Wanless, dressed in what my then sparkly and exhausted brain could only process as a Star Trek version of a Virgin of Guadalupe shirt, truly stunning with a shimmering beam-me-up quality, explored our very human side with a spread that felt like First Contact. With cards designated as the spirit, head, heart and feet, plus left and right arms, we walked through another deceptively simple and gentle self-analysis. I blinked down at my cards. I was using a favorite deck, Carol Hartman Devall’s Cirque de Whimsy Tarot. And I had three feet. Grounded, I thought. I’m grounded. It seemed right in every sense of the word. And my assertive right hand was strong and reached forward where my shy receptive left hand was, at least, represented. Some people next to me said, “I have no head.” Seriously, I thought, eyes still sore from the night before, that should be me today.

I dashed out of the session to take the last of my work conference calls to heart and was pleased that our software release had gone well overall. I exchanged a few words with Dan Pelletier about the financial planning in general, then headed to my room to change into my costume for the evening. Transformed into the Hermit, I went back to the banquet, pleased that I had ordered the fish and the fruit for dessert. Mary Nale and Reenee Cummins snapped my picture and threatened to take my frog-cane for Mary’s collection. We laughed and ate and enjoyed the show after dinner. Nancy Antenucci’s dance of the novice 2 of Swords becoming the High Priestess was wonderful. The musical members of our tribe played and sang. And, the crack up of the evening, Dan Pelletier and Jeannette Roth of Tarot Garden performed their own rendition of Point/Counterpoint with all the risk and raunch of vintage Saturday Night Live.

And after that, there was yet another evening session. Sheilaa Hite’s very popular Past Life Regression reading discussion was such a hit that they had to bring in another table and more chairs to seat everyone. It was worth the effort and we were tempted to purchase her books, quickly snatched up. When all was over that night, this little Hermit had to head for the barn. Happily, I turned in for the night knowing that fun awaited on our next and final day.

Tarot Bingo at the
Readers Studio 2012

While I was in the middle of the near-all-nighter, I realized that the topics covered by the presenters were heavy, heady, meaty and serious. I was the Sunday Breakfast Roundtable facilitator and I knew I could not, on the last day ask people to think hard and deep over their free breakfast. I found just the thing to wake people up on a happy note. Tarot Bingo! I had found a print-your-own bingo card site on the web a few weeks ago and had created bingo out of the 78 tarot cards. With the help of the front desk I printed out plenty of cards and after having everyone introduce themselves, we got down to business. One very competitive table cried with joy or despair at each card called, but it was Joan Eisenberg who won a free copy of my new Dust Bunny Lenormand deck, currently at the printers. It was fun and lasted just long enough to let people gather their thoughts before our final session with Ruth Ann and Wald Amberstone.

As a last treat, we had break-out sessions with so many good choices it was hard for me to settle down. I finally landed at Barbara Moore’s table where we received tips on publishing. We asked our hard questions and Barbara showed her experience and expertise. And then, finally, we received our certificates of completion of this year’s Readers Studio 2012.

You’d think that was the end. But it wasn’t.

An informal review of a Lenormand reading with Donnaleigh de LaRose with expert help from Rana George was not only fascinating but also inspiring. None other than Ciro Marchetti attended with interest. Will he produce his own Lenormand soon? Only time will tell.
R-L: Nancy Antenucci, Beth Palladino,
 Marcia McCord, Jude Alexander
with tiaras, perfect for the Tarot Game
at Readers Studio 2012

A raucous ride in a white stretch limo to Uncle Pete’s with our party of 22 post-RS dinner buddies for a delicious dinner followed. Back at the hotel, Jude Alexander, Nancy Antenucci, Beth Palladino and I determined to play the full version of the Tarot Game, all of us winners, of course!

I packed my zillion decks, my mini-pirate rubber ducks, my travel Tarot Game handmade by Jude, my notes from our brilliant presenters, my three computers and my frog-cane, safe from Mary Nale after all, and flew home. Yup, gotta go next year. BINGO!!

Best wishes!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Readers Studio 2012 Part 1

I went to New York to be the Page of Swords, to soak up new information, new ideas, new ways of looking at things, to listen to what others had to say. I went there to be all the other pages too, to soak up inspiration, emotion and cool tarot decks.

I wanted to talk with people in person whom I text, exchange Facebook and Twitter messages, meet through Donnaleigh de LaRose’s Beyond Worlds on Blog Talk Radio or through telephone classes with the Amberstones’ Tarot School. I wanted to see what Jeannette and Dan had for me at the Tarot Garden, decks new and old, bargains and, ahem, Big Kid Tarot decks. I wanted to see what the stars of the Tarot world had to say and even what they avoided saying. I wanted full immersion Readers Studio. I got it.

As thrilling as Bob Place and Sasha Graham’s trip to the ancient tarot decks was for me, that was, after all, just the preview of the reason I had spent all day on an airplane last Monday. Let the official treats begin, especially since the appetizer had been so savory!

Thursday I realized I had not signed up for Wald and Ruth Ann Amberstone’s early bird class on the Court Cards. I had had a few deep dives into the courts in the last year or so, had even taught my own class. Happy that they accepted walk-ins, my cards and I made our way to a table and we began what seemed like a benign process of picking out our court cards, selecting our favorite suit, selecting our favorite rank, our favorite card within suits, etc. When we laid out the cards from our four stacks in a 4 x 4 grid, we had a spread which showed our favorite card in the upper left through our least favorite in the lower right. Taken together, it was an almost uncomfortable revelation of the make-up of our own personality, showing our tolerances, our strong likes and dislikes and even the “ho-hum” section. Well, there I was, spread like “filet of soul” upon the table before me, with my sunshine and shadow, my strengths and foibles. What started out to be a great little court cards review turned into the best and scariest of the inner journey of the Hermit.

Maybe there was a reason I picked the Hermit as my costume for the Saturday night dinner?

Friday afternoon James Wells took us on a Dante’s Inferno walk through the stages of grief, a sucker punch of a reading session that I must have sorely needed. It was powerful, to say the least. James shared his own poignant story of his father’s recent death. I was glad we were all in there together in our guided tour of the Underworld with James and, like Dante, we were allowed out again to breathe the quiet air of earthly pleasures.

Earthly pleasures turned into a quick round of the travel version of Jude Alexander’s Tarot Game including my new friend from Scotland, Andrew Duncan. It’s a cut-down version of the larger game with fewer parts but no less fun. And when you’re done, you’ve got a reading! Had to get one at Tarot Media Company!

I wandered towards the hotel bar and restaurant and found a big round table of folks to enjoy jokes and the occasional serious discussion with: Aulruna, Becky, Ciro, DemonGoddess, Frances, Rana, and oh, I just KNOW I’m leaving people out. It was big, lively table and we had a nice light-hearted dinner. Note: You must be 21 or older to ask Ciro about Superman. The discussion that followed that, however, made him blush, so we feel everything evened out.

I wandered downstairs, early as it turns out, for the first of the optional evening workshops. Now, this is a True Confession. I have begun to wonder if my enrollment in Thalassa’s classes is the kiss of death for attendance. This is an unreasonable fear because the times it has happened before, no one knew of my enrollment besides Thalassa and me and sometimes my friend Kristine Gorman. The last couple of classes I have had with her, I’ve been the only other one there and started to think it was me. Deodorant? Check. You know the list of things you go through. So I waited until at least four other people had signed up for her class, then put my name in.

It turns out I needn’t have worried. The class was well attended and Thalassa always has a great trip through the Dark Side of Tarot with a pie-in-the-face approach to confronting those scary cards. If you haven’t taken one of her classes, you’re missing out. Just saying.

Arriving at her classroom early, though, I was greeted by none other than Mary K. Greer who was teaching her class in the room next door. Or, rather, she would be except the dividing wall between the two classrooms had not been set up. We looked at each other and decided that while we could call the event people at the hotel, we were also reasonably intelligent (ok, Mary’s reasonably brilliant and I’m just following along) and could figure out how to get a fuzzy wall to make two classrooms out of one. It was a fun exercise in real world problem solving and I felt happy that I had had a behind the scenes moment with one of my favorite tarot authors.

Evening class was over at 10 pm. The cool kids retreated to the shelter of the bar and other happy tarot people. I, however, did not. The Spectre of Work arose at its appointed time like some Dickensian Ghost of Software Implementation Present and I dashed up to my hotel room and my three (not a typo) computers I brought to get through the evening. I worked from 10 pm until 3 am, got up again at 7 am and worked until 9:30 am, missing part of Shawn Nacol’s class.

Best wishes!