I didn’t get a lot of sleep Tuesday morning. I grabbed a disco nap after dinner Monday night but when Restaurant Man doesn’t get done at work til midnight, a hedgehog may end up out at the places with the latest last call.  Hooray for nice taxi drivers who work the wee hour shift and make sure we get safely home.

After a summer filled with children and their reading triumphs, a severe shortage of books about dolphins, and an excessive number of new Star Wars books*, I was ready to set all things 0-12 aside and head for the Windy City for a brief refueling.

One of the joys for me of CHI is the opportunity to surround myself with interesting intelligent people who have very different jobs and goals than I do.  While some library things do come up and I’m happy to share the latest, it’s not just librarians: instead I’m hanging out with a drummer, an SEO guy, people who code in a ridiculous number of computer languages, dancers, restaurant staff very upscale places, AudioGirl, stage managers, actors, rock stars….and that can just be in one day! It shakes me out of my everyday focus, my professional social networks (primarily of librarians) and reminds me of exciting things to be found everywhere.

And it inspires me. Many of these people I’ve known since half-way through college and we’ve all grown up together. We’re facing our immediate or impending 30s and serious adulthood with terror, frivolity, humor and the knowledge that with good friends, willingness to learn, and sheer power of will–you can accomplish a lot.

I come home not only refreshed for having seen friends, shared confidences, and caught up on the latest gossip–I am inspired. I can’t wait to bring them my newest stories, things I’ve tackled, colossal failures I’ve had and such. They’ll be there to hear the tales, share their own, cheer me on, and send me back ready to prove to myself and to them that there’s so much I can do.

Whenever it is I do take over the world, I’ll have a good team behind me.

*There are no new movies, what’s triggering this massive headlong rush for Star Wars stuff?