generous and sweet, or vice-versa

The threads in my Facebook on “OMG, less than a week ’till Glen Workshop,” and “Who’s going to be there this year?” and “Are we going to that place with the margaritas again, or the craft cocktail place, or both?” have started to crowd out my usual threads.

I find it delicious that, on merely my third visit, I feel thoroughly enfolded, as if I’d been attending since the conference started. As far as I can tell, this is a warm, welcoming group of verrry creative people–

who nevertheless firmly remember (and periodically re-channel-!) what it’s like to feel new, awkward, and—more to the point—woefully untalented in situ.

The first time I attended, I worried that Glen might be full of Guy in Your MFA:

because those people are all over the creative landscape, building their gates and quizzes and arching their eyebrows just so. I’d dealt with a few before, but they’re tiring, and tiresome. Who wants to put up with that?!

Nobody at the Glen, evidently. Each digital or tangible new person, sidling in with self-deprecation, gets gently tugged into the thicket. Plans are extended, unfolded, morphed. My first summer, I thought I was tagging along to a large-group visit to an art exhibit and discovered I was one of three seeing a brand-new installation—an installation that my classmate (the instigator) was one of the few who knew about… and is now kinda famous. (Deservedly so.) I could even have gone to Chimayo, despite the limited number of seats in cars, because somehow someone would have found a way. (“You sure you don’t want to go? It’s supposed to be amazing-?”)

And the days I spent hiking alone were equally sunnily affirmed. Refilling the tank takes alone-time as well as time in community, and half of the point of the Glen is tank-filling.

I, too, am starting to fizz about my week of thoughtful commentary and bracing encouragement.

And margaritas. Don’t forget the margaritas.

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