Monday, May 08, 2017

Monday Memories--Medical Library Association, May 1998

May 22-28, 1998, I was in Philadelphia for the Medical Library Association annual meeting.  We had beautiful weather--I think it rained only one day.  I arrived on Friday, got settled, registered and went out to eat with two of my roommates, Carolyn and Gretchen, and a few librarians from California.  On Saturday I did a morning "historic" tour which was very interesting.  Pennsylvania is next door to Ohio, but our histories are very different, since they were a "commonwealth" long before the union was formed.  We toured Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell, a shell of a house where Ben Franklin lived, and a print shop and Betsy Ross's home.  By Saturday afternoon I found my friend Jerry Stuenkel from Detroit who later lived and worked on St. Maartin's Island in the Caribbean and now lives in Florida.  We went to the grand opening "birthday party" of MLA (it was 100 years old that year) and then to the opening of the exhibits.  The party had "mummers" which I guess is a big thing in Philadelphia--guys dressed up in wild costumes (reminds me of Mardi Gras) and playing instruments and dancing

On Sunday, Majors (book distributors) sponsored their walk through the city and a breakfast.  They give us all matching T-shirts.  Jerry and I walked with a retired librarian named Priscilla who was 80 years old and didn't look a day over 65.   After the walk I changed clothes and went to a lovely Catholic church about a block from the hotel with Gretchen.  The priest and the cantor were just outstanding and the building was beautifully restored with lots of soaring arches and stained glass windows.  Catholics now sing hymns to Protestant tunes, but at about half the tempo.  They need to pep it up a little.  The sermon was on Christian Unity, and as I shook the priest's hand as I was leaving I told him I was Lutheran, and hoped some day we might be able to take communion together.  He laughed and said that sort of unity would be nice.

I met Jerry and her friend Patty who is a hospital librarian in Detroit (so young and cute you just want to hate her, but she was too sweet) for lunch and then we went to the first plenary session (outside speakers), a program on electronic journals and then to an art museum where Patty had tickets from an exhibitor for dinner.  We ate and looked at paintings--most of which were 18th or 19th century art relating to Pennsylvania history in some way--and then walked back to the Marriot.

Monday was our big day--our Veterinary Medical Library Section had a breakfast hosted by CAB (British indexing company), then we went to the University of Pennsylvania campus for a program on a canine genetic disorders database.  After lunch we had our business meeting, and then our program, for which I was one of the speakers.  I had practiced my speech many times, and feel it went quite well.  Most people seemed to remember two points, which is pretty good.  Also, every one got a copy of the full speech, so they can always read it.  Then for dinner we went to a lovely Chinese restaurant.  Tuesday was the second plenary session and I attended a meeting on evidence based medicine (hard to explain, but it means you diagnose based on what has been found to be sound practice in published studies).  Then Jerry and I said our good-byes for another year or two (she was not at the 1996 or 1997 meetings) and I helped Kathrine of Texas A & M put up our poster exhibit of our section's history.  About 3 p.m. I left for the airport and got picked up by Bob about 6 p.m.

(The notes for this memory were from a letter to my college roommate and childhood friend, JoElla, whose married name is the same as my grandmother's, and I also discussed some genealogy because her husband's grandmother and my grandmother called each other "cousin" in their letters and I had mailed a batch of them to her.)

No comments: