I’m not going to say that it is hot in South Georgia. After all, there were enough other things going on at the newspaper columnists’ conference that you almost didn’t notice the heat. However, I should have known that “Macon” was too close to “bacon” for comfort.
The first day of the conference was great. We were welcomed by the mayor, greeted by distinguished guests from the local university, and met the publisher of the local paper. We had interesting panels and people who talked about writing, the newspaper business, and other stuff columnists are interested in.
Little did we know we were about to be introduced to the real South Georgia – the one that sizzles. We had dinner at a Big House that once belonged to the Allman brothers. If you’ve never heard of the Allman brothers, don’t feel bad. They apparently were a hippy rock band back in the days of sex, drugs, and rock’n’roll. We had dinner on the grounds and a rock band to entertain us.
Did I mention how hot it was? No. I am trying to be polite and not to mention the heat.
The next day was the big conference day. Nancy Grace was there. Thank goodness it was cool inside since she was wearing a leather jacket. We expected the worse, but she was actually quite interesting, friendly, and a dynamic speaker. She even brought her mom and her kids and posed for pictures with the attendees.
Did we stay in the nice cool hotel for lunch? No. We went to a park for a picnic in the sun. The food was good southern barbecue and slaw dogs, which people had never heard of but ate anyhow. It would have been okay except for that word that I’m trying not to mention.
After the picnic, we went for a tour of the city and saw all the hot spots where musicians used to hang out. Who could predict that the air conditioning would fail on the trolley? Hot is an understatement, so I won’t mention it. No one passed out, after all.
After we got back to the hotel and cooled off, it was time for dinner at a southern mansion. Did I mention that they did not have air conditioning back in the 1800’s when southern mansions were in vogue? The mansion was gorgeous, antiques, crystal chandeliers, oil paintings, and violin music. But the best thing was the paper fans that were passed around to help us keep cool.
I don’t think I’ve ever eaten turnip green dip before. I tried to stay away from the cheese grits, crab cakes, okra and anything else I thought might make me sick. It was sort of like being at a party thrown by Granny Clampett except there was no crawdad dip – at least I don’t think so.
By now we had removed our jackets, wraps, and anything else that could be removed and were still doing a slow melt down. I fanned myself vigorously and ate cups of ice. As I said, there were enough things going on to make the conference interesting and fun in spite of the South Georgia weather. Can you believe the conference was planned for early May so it would be cool?
I am trying hard not to mention it, but I still get dizzy when I think of the word I’m trying not to mention.
Copyright 2012 Sheila Moss
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