Yesterday I went to the PHENND conference (Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development) and once I got there, it was a really interesting day. Getting there was an adventure though. It was held at Widener University in Chester, which is a pretty straight shot down I-95 from my place. I mapquested it before leaving work on Thursday, and it said it would take about 25 minutes to get there. Knowing Philadelphia traffic, I decided that to be safe, I would double the amount of time. I needed to be there at 9 am, so I ended up leaving Center City a little before 8 am, thinking that that would PLENTY of time. It was not to be. I was cruising along 95 through South Philly, feeling really good about the time I was making, when, just past the airport the flowing traffic started to resemble Broad Street after an Eagles game, when you haven’t been smart enough to take Septa. It was absolutely locked down, we were moving about two miles an hour. I passed a couple of exits, but I don’t know that area south of the city well enough to attempt to get off and take surface streets. I did finally get to Widener, after two hours in my car (and XPN was NOT playing good music) magically found a parking spot and located the University Center.
(On a side note, most of the time I really enjoy driving a car with a manual transmission, I get a charge out of really working the gears and getting the most from my little four cylinder engine. However, on days when traffic is moving at a glacial pace, an automatic transmission begins to sound like a really intelligent way to go).
Anyway, the sychronicitious part of this post is this. On Monday I sent my resume to the director of the Civic House as Penn. I had mentioned to a friend (Amy) last weekend that I had seen the job posted and was thinking about applying. The only thing that was holding me back was that the job had been posted since December, because that meant in all likelihood, the interview process was over or close to being over. Amy just happened to know the director, and emailed him about me on Monday. My assumption was correct, they were in the second round of interviews and were hoping to hire someone soon. But David, the director, told her to tell me to send my resume on, just for kicks. I sent it and really expected that would be the last I would hear of it. On Friday, the first workshop I pick to go to was one led by Bruce Schimmel, who started the City Paper years ago. It was really interesting, and actually made me start thinking that maybe I should look into becoming a journalist, I found everything he talked about really fascinating. But who should sit down next to me in the workshop? David, the director of the Civic House! Pretty interesting!
Then, later that afternoon, I’m in a workshop that’s dealing with keeping recent college grads in Philly, and Carol, the woman who was my teacher/advisor at the Philadelphia Center five years ago was there! I sit down after the workshop to talk to her, and a young woman across the table from me looks at me and says, “Didn’t I talk to you on the phone yesterday?” It turns out she works at the Philadelphia Committee to end Homelessness and I had called there about a placement for a medical student. Philadelphia, especially the non-profit/University world is VERY small.
Tonight I’m out to dinner with Georgia, Cindy, Una and Una’s newish boyfriend (I’m not even sure if were allowed to call him her boyfriend yet). We’re going to see Ellis Paul at the Tin Angel and then off to Jen Hurley’s beautiful house for the annual “Beat the Winter Blues” party.