OK. I'm calling it.
Covid-19 is not solved. We will not all be vaccinated by October. The economy is opening up despite the medical community's warning that this is just Too Soon. Predictions are for another rise in cases and another doubled-down quarantine period come the fall.
So, I'm crying "uncle." For the first time since 2012, Women At Woodstock will not take place on-site in October. It's just too unsure and too risky, especially for all of us who fall into the "at-risk" group. Sadly, we will not be meeting at Lifebridge Sanctuary in 2020.
BUT - Women At Woodstock will happen! We will be meeting, in the cosmos (as it were), online - and it'll be as immersive as ever.
And actually, after months of being asked to make Women At Woodstock virtual this year, and resisting the idea, and then thinking about it, and finally diving into a serious planning phase, I'm actually very excited. In fact, I'm very, VERY excited. So (trumpets) - Women At Woodstock 2020 is moving into an alternate reality:
Women At Woodstock Virtual.
But let me say this upfront. I HATE Zoom meetings! I do.
But do you remember my story about starting Women At Woodstock in the first place? I said, "I HATE conferences!" And that was why, back in 2011 after suffering through what I vowed would be the last conference or networking event that I would ever attend, I conceived of Women At Woodstock so that I could gather like-minded women together for community and sharing in a way that was different. Something without the dress code, the makeup, the bullshit. Something human. Something real.
And so it will be with Women At Woodstock Virtual - an online gathering that, yes, uses technology like Zoom, but is something much more than that.
It will be a virtual gathering that is not Your Normal Zoom, Your Formulaic Webinar, Your Log-In/Listen & Watch/Feel Trapped In Your Own Head/Log Off/Slam, Bam, Thank You, Ma... you get what I'm saying.
We will have online workshops for the Over-50 Retreat, just as planned. We will have writing sessions and shared readings for the Writers Retreat, just as scheduled. We will have Mastermind Sessions and Evening Salons. Yes, all of that will happen. But much more will happen in Women At Woodstock Virtual than sessions at your computer screen. What will happen will be shared and communal and real. I'm thinking of a simultaneous, across-the miles, mind-meld, communal experience that connects us with one another, you in your house, me in mine, everyone in her own personal space, all together and all at once, not just for an hour at a time on Zoom but in a three-day exchange of shared energy, independent of physical limitations. The power of collective thought focused on the same intent. A kind of "oooommmm" escape from day-to-day life.
Yeah, I see I've veered into woo woo. But, you know, that's me. Dream-space thoughts that travel out there but somehow get roped in by my engineering / medical / law / technogeek foundations. And of course I always ground my grand ideas with the elements of good food & wine. Always.