Early Friday morning, I left Memphis on a nine hour drive to Dublin, Ohio to attend the Dublin Literacy Conference. I love to drive so really that wasn't an issue. On Sunday, I climbed back into my trusty Elantra and drove the nine hours back to Memphis from Dublin. Again, no big deal. It was on Saturday morning that I began asking myself, "Are you crazy?" when I woke in the hotel looked out the window to 4 or 5 inches of SNOW !
The ground was covered, and from my hotel window, I could not even see the road. Had I driven all that way, just to have the conference canceled? I had looked forward to this weekend of learning for weeks. Frantically, I began tweeting my friends from the area.
It soon became obvious that I had forgotten that I wasn't in Memphis anymore. While a fourth of this amount of snow would have brought Memphis to a complete stand-still, it apparently was next to nothing for my friends from Ohio. I soon found myself sitting in my car, warming it up and trying to clear my windshield and back window with nothing more than a scrap piece of cardboard. (What can I say? I don't own an ice scraper! )
The moment finally came when I could put it off no longer. I had to put the car in drive and begin my journey. In what looked to me like a blizzard (though I was later assured it wasn't anywhere close) I pulled out of the parking lot. Plowing through the snow covered street at the snail's pace of 10 mph, I made my way down the two mile stretch of road to the high school.
After what seemed like an eternity, I pulled into the high school parking lot. I had made it! I was at Dublit! Chris Lehman, Tammy and Clare, Lisa Graft, Colby Sharp, Mr. Schu, and so many others were here ready to discuss literacy. These were my teaching mentors, and I was finally going to be able to learn from them in person.
The running joke throughout the day was the teachers who did make it to Dublit were indeed crazy. Who in their right mind, after all, would get out in that weather, or in my case, drive that distance for one day of professional learning?
Perhaps those of us who were at DubLit Saturday are a bit crazy, but we are also the dedicated professionals who will bring change to how our profession is perceived by the public, the teachers who go the extra mile for our students, the life-long learners who are always trying to refine and perfect our craft. Crazy? Maybe, but I for one can't wait until next year when I can travel to DubLit again!