The Chicago URBAANE Conference lived up to what the acronym stands for-Urban Resolutions Bringing African Americans to Natural Environments because even in the midst of the city, CSU has a prairie on the campus and an aquaponics center. I won’t even go into the fact that folks were walking around with cowboy hats on all over the place due to the fact that they were having a rodeo that day as a campus activity! I will say that with all of this, I felt at peace and right at home and the smiles and embraces from folks coming to the event made that feeling grow as the time went on.
The greatest embrace that I had all day was that of the President of CSU, Dr. Wayne Watson. Just as the MC for the morning that was to introduce me arrived, we went over the flow of activities and I was about the proceed to my place off stage when I was told that there was someone to whom I must be introduced. I turned to see a very distinguished gentleman and I came over and he immediately took my hands in his hands. I could hear more of what his spirit was saying than I could hear Brother Howard telling me the name of the president of the university. We did the proper traditional greeting amongst African leaders and he then leaned back still holding my hands and said, “I’m a Geechee!” What did he say that for?!!! He was also from South Carolina! So, here came the big ole family hugs and carrying on!