Monday, October 29, 2012

Coast-to-Coast and Back Again

October was a crazy-busy month of travelling!  First we headed to Pennsylvania for our dear friends' wedding which was just so perfectly them.  It was held in the small-town brewery where they got engaged with just a small group of family and friends.  We were so lucky to get to share their wedding day with them.  Look how happy they are, it makes my heart skip a beat.

We spent a few extra days in State College where we caught up with friends, closed down a bar after a funk show, and remembered the burning sensation of breathing in 20 degree weather.  During the day, I was able to meet up with some of my ongoing collaborators back in the anthropology department.  Geoff flew back to San Antonio with some equipment they are lending me for our newly funded research (YAY!) and got only a moderate amount of questioning from the skeptical TSA agents.

While Geoff was on his way back to balmy Texas, I flew to Stephenson, WA for a pair of conferences focusing on novel techniques in statistical genetics and genetic epidemiology.  The conferences were jam packed but educational and the surroundings - located on the Columbia River Gorge couldn't be beat.  I even ran into a friend from grad school that I didn't even know would be there.

Between prepping for my presentations at the conferences and all the travel, I was ready for a break.  My mom flew out and met me in Portland for a very relaxing three days.  The only real plans we had were to eat at some food carts and for me to get my first pedicure.  (I've sort of avoided them because I was afraid I would love them too much and want to get them all the time.  I was right!)

Because my family loves museums, we had to check out the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry where we happened upon a kids chemistry lab (they were doing flame tests!), the AAA's exhibit on race which features several anthropologists I know, and the very fun Grossology exhibit where we played a life-size game of Operation.

Of course, when in Portland, you must have Voodoo doughnuts and Stumptown coffee.  Being the loving women we are, we each flew home with a box of maple-bacon glazed doughnuts as carry-ons.

Our last night in town, we had drinks on the 30th floor of a large pink building (I think it was a bank?) and watched the sun set.  It was the perfect ending to a relaxing weekend with mom!

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