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The Wacky, Crazy-Awesome, Reno, Nevada Adventure!!!

July 2, 2010

SWAA Conference 2009

The Skinny:

The adventure began with the last Southwestern Anthropological Association Conference, which occurred last year in Las Vegas. I’d had so much fun that I’d made up my mind to do it again this year.

The Southwestern Anthropological Association, or SWAA for short is a “four-field association of academic and applied professional anthropologists and students working around the world”. Every year they have a conference, and it’s always a blast! This year their conference was held in Reno, NV.

In the anthropology club at NAU I’d been pushing to get a group going, but as of a few weeks beforehand we’d only managed to get two people to go, myself and a classmate named Autumn. Although this was a smaller group than I had hoped, it was still looking all right. However, barely weeks before the event, Autumn had to cancel! Finding this out late one night, and the event being too expensive for me to go by myself, I somehow managed to convince two of my friends, Charles and Katie to come along. Little did they know the craziness that was to ensue

The Drive

After convincing Northern Arizona University to give us as much as $200 to get to the conference, registering, and picking up the rental car, a sweet, if goofy-looking Nissan Versa, Flagstaff was hit by one of their epic, freak, May snowstorms that happen every year. Driving back to my house I got to learn how the car handled in whiteout, icy conditions. That night I performed the final production of Nadie Puede Saberlo and at 11:00 pm we rolled out.

Because I had been busy with school and all that, I hadn’t actually written my PowerPoint presentation. Luckily I had a very long drive to Reno, and I was able to write it through the night. Because I didn’t have internet for most of the drive, I did the next best thing, which was to load as many articles and papers on the subject from the internet onto my jump drive so I could source them in the car. Clever, I know!

Now, Google Maps makes the claim that it takes 12 hours to get from Flagstaff to Reno, and I was scheduled to present at 9:00 am the following morning. We had anticipated this problem and decided to go for it anyway. No real forethought. Just go for it.

long-ass drive to Reno

As it turns out, Google Maps is wrong.

We got there in ten hours and fifteen minutes.

Considering we’d had a full day and then driven all night to get there, I’d say we did a pretty good job. As soon as we figured out where to go, my friends dropped me off and still getting dressed I ran to my presentation.

I was fifteen minutes too late.

To Be Continued…

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