This is the view from my hotel balcony in San Diego, where I’ve just completed my second AVID Summer Institute of the summer. This one was great. My presenting partner and I have very complementary personalities, the participants were eager and interested and it really all went quite smoothly. I kept setting my alarm for 5:00 AM, to get up and walk or swim and after the first day, I did neither. It was so hard to wake up that I just puttered around in my room until time to go to work at about 7:00.
Each night I’d lay down to sleep with my balcony door open to the breeze. It was nice until the cigarette smoke from the balcony below wafted in. The first time it happened, I called the front desk to ask if I was in the wrong room. They assured me that the smoke was not supposed to be happening, and they called and took care of it. The next time, the desk said that if they were smoking on their balcony they couldn’t do anything about it. That seemed wrong to me, but I didn’t know what else to do apart from confronting the scofflaws (Heaven forbid!), so I closed my door until the middle of the night when the room got too hot and the smokers were sleeping. Then I’d open it again and let in the coolness.
This thing about rights of smokers and non-smokers is a tangle I think. The freedom of one so overlaps with that of the other. And of course, I think my freedom of breathing clean air should surely supercede the freedom of someone else to breathe smoke. And I know the smoke breathers see it the other way. I just wish they’d stop. For their sake as well as mine!