- Date: Thursday, July 13, 2006 - 10pm
- Location: Somerville, MA
- Kitchen: My Apartment
- Fellow Chefs: Mike, Vigleik, Shihchi, and Marco
- Dining Companion: Jessie
- Recipe Rating: C+
After 25 hours of traveling, I arrived back in Boston late last night. Sometimes I wonder what we could accomplish if we didn't have set ideas about what we can and cannot do. If you had told me 2 years ago that today I would be sitting here, having just returned from traveling overseas alone, to a conference where I barely knew anyone, and gave a talk in front of many of the big shots in my field, I probably would have laughed. It would have seemed impossible partly because it would have seemed like an unlikely set of circumstances. But mainly I would have thought, "I could never do that." And the truth is, a few weeks ago I thought about not going. At the very least I thought about asking not to speak. I even wrote an email to the administrators with that content. And even though almost everyone I asked about it supported my decision not to give a talk there, I never sent the email. Part of me thought that they wouldn't choose me to speak, so it wouldn't matter if I sent it or not. But I think I was also curious whether I would be able to do it if they chose me.
The thing that surprises me the most is not that I did it: that I went there, and met people, and gave a talk, but rather that I had fun doing it. Of course I was nervous, and at moments quite stressed, but I really had a good time this past week. I never would have predicted that. From now on I am sure that giving conference talks will seem like much less of a big deal (probably some of you reading this, who are older, are wondering why it was a big deal to me at all!) because now I know I can do it. Who knew!?!?
Here's a picture I took standing outside the conference site in Germany...