Post-conference blues

Suddenly blindsided by post-conference blues. The dangerous thing
about finally having time to breathe is that it’s also enough time to
cry.

Now I remember.

Left the workshop room to find an empty corridor. Talked a bit with
other people from the lab. It was nowhere near laughter and
conversation over coffee, late-night conference parties, enjoying time
with my closest friends…

Friends.

That’s it. This is loneliness and homesickness.

Tech conferences were always the best times for me to meet with
friends. They’ve always been reunions for me, from the programming
competitions in high school to the last open-source get-together I
went to right before I left for Canada. We’d chat long into the night
about all the crazy stuff that was going on.

Sometimes conferences were the only times I’d get to see
Dominique. And I miss him. I miss him
terribly. I miss going to conferences with him. He helped me prep,
stopped me from panicking, made it easy for me to talk to other
people…

Conferences are some of my fondest memories. Today’s conference was
nice, but… Cold. Strange. Empty.

I guess it’s like that for everything else. I’m still trying to find
friends, still figuring out how to relate to people.

I miss being totally present, the way you can be only among friends
who know you as more than a collection of interests, who care about
you as _you_, who know the million things you hate about yourself and
love you anyway.

It doesn’t make sense to feel lonely, but I feel it anyway.

Hooray for technology, though. People who say computers are impersonal
have never been on the receiving end of some heavy-duty ASCII
comforting. People who don’t see the point in cellphones have never
instantly touched base with other people without having to worry about
where they were. (What’s up with charging for incoming calls, anyway?
SHEESH.) And oh, I really hope that Skype upgrade gets everything
working again. I hadn’t realized just _how_ much I needed to talk to
friends…

(And yes, this is a personal bit of information and most of you are
probably wondering why the heck I’m posting this, but this is what’s
happening in my life and it affects me far more than the other things
I post.)

Thanks to Clair, Charo, Dominique, Mom, Dad, Diane, Mario, and everyone
else who was there in spirit although perhaps not online.