On Saturday morning all the participants of the women’s Leadership Retreat gathered in the main lodge in the restaurant for breakfast. After a quick meal, we met in a small meeting room and listened to a presentation on the Rockefeller Foundation by Annett Pagan. Her talk was followed by a very interesting, lively and thoughtful discussion about development issues in the Arkansas Delta, the need for education and the challenges that inhibit economic development.

We also learned about a very interesting sweet potato project in the Delta. Sweet potatoes are a high cash crop for the farmers, but a special infrastructure needed to be designed and built in order to support the sweet potato project. Mary Good also updated us on technological progress in Arkansas, some of the new projects that the state is hoping to develop, and discussed the more interesting start-up companies around the state. I’m really glad I was there because I learned a lot about economic development in our state. Afterwards we had lunch and departed for home.

The weekend was a relatively quiet one. I came back from Petit Jean Mountain and by that evening I just could not drag myself out to Leflarfest or the African students’ banquet. Instead I just spent a quiet evening with my mom. The next day was church followed by breakfast with the church breakfast bunch. We went down to El Camino Real on South School. They have a very cheap, very good breakfast with a Mexican flavor. I had a breakfast burrito that had eggs, cheese, chorizo and beans and it was delicious. I asked to have it covered with cheese and sauce, enchilada style. My mom had a ham and cheese burrito. Some of the other folks with us had chorizo on scrambled eggs with cheese and tortillas. It was really a good meal. I would recommend it, especially if you’re on a budget!

That evening my mom treated me to a wonderful event. It was a concert at the Walton Arts Center with Bobby McFerrin, Chick Corea and Jack DeJohnette. What great fun! At times there was a cacophony of sound, but it all pulled together. The artists used their bodies, voices, the sides of the drums and the top of the piano—everything that was tangible, really—as an instrument. They also switched places, so that Jack DeJohnette would play the piano and Chick Corea would play the drums, or Chick Corea would sing and Bobby McFerrin would be on the drums. It was just a hoot! They are three very, very talented musicians who enjoyed being in each other’s company and who had a lot of fun performing together. Bobby McFerrin drew in the audience by asking us to sing, chant and vocalize. We saw Don Judges and Chandana Becker there too. Don pointed out how easily McFerrin was able to communicate without the use of language through sounds, vocalizations and body language. It was just a wonderful concert. Thanks, Mom!