I fly to Phoenix this weekend and should be using my free moments to think about packing. Instead I got distracted tonight by the cucumbers in the garden and decided to make dill pickles. While hemming and hawing about whether I could really spare the time for pickles, I found myself staring at a photo on our refrigerator.
It’s a picture taken at an AANP conference. My daughter was about five weeks old at the time and is sound asleep on a couch. Next to her is Amy’s son, Misha Rothenberg-Herscu. There’s a third baby sleeping next to them but I forget who it is.
I should know how many times the AANP has held conferences at the Biltmore since that photo was taken. My daughter graduated college this year so that photo was taken 22 years ago. If we have followed the current routine of returning every third year…. Would that be 7 conferences, 21 years? But there’s an extra year in there. I’ve lost track.
When the AANP markets our conferences as a "family reunion" there is some truth to that phrase. The kids aren’t coming though. Our Sophie just signed a lease for an apartment in Jerusalem where she has enrolled in a graduate program to study Arabic. Amy tells me that Misha is doing well, living in Boston, so is her Sophia apparently. We had the pleasure of meeting Misha’s girlfriend last Thanksgiving and also of having Sophia Herscu for dinner just a few weeks ago, just before she left Colorado to drive east to start grad school at Harvard.
In a weird way our yearly conferences really have become a reunion that one attends without thinking. Like celebrating Thanksgiving with your family. You find the same relatives annoying year after year but you still show up. That’s kind of what the AANP conferences are like. There are some people who bug the heck out of me. I still love to see them though. I guess that's how it is with family…."