I woke up early this morning intent on inspiring creativity outside and in, first by facilitating two days of innovation exercises at an educators conference at a farm-camp in mid-state New York, and then by walking dozens of miles through NYC and Philly, climbing the Statue of Liberty* and ringing the Liberty Bell, couple-clutching through Times Square and Washington Square Park, watching kids play baseball in Brooklyn and dance a recital in Upper Dublin, PA, navigating and negotiating my way through Canal St., Port Authority, deer crossings* and crossing the Delaware, mixing it up with family, old friends, rude people with East-coast accents, and my girl.
I got back in Chicago just in time for exploring leadership with new MBA students and seasoned risk managers and then hitting a homer over the left fielder’s softball glove before I celebrated at a party featuring the largest pink penis pinata* ever seen. Then we ate and swayed with the rain and heat along with several bands at Chicago street festivals before heading north to Summerfest in Milwaukee, taking a view from the sky* before dancing dangerously on benches to Michael Franti (video here) and his frantic love vibe, and then as the heat souffled us we were better off leaving the beach where alewives had flooded the shore and drove back down to the Chicago lakefront for late night swimming and a thousand-person, fire-twirling full moon celebration.
By afternoon I shared the sorrow and joy of a death and a bris, took moped rides to interfaith program meetings, and watched fireworks lighting the sky. I officially finished my own musical script, packed my car with musical instruments and chairs, held auditions* and am now starting Malaise County Fair rehearsals, taking the next step with my most personal creative project, guitar polished and ready to strum into the unknown.
As evening began to roll around, I facilitated an “idea jam”* for a super-smart group of engineers whose buildings can swivel, and this past weekend I swiveled my way out to Ravinia to listen to Five for Fighting under the stars and then took in the ultimate theater-on-steroids show–30 “plays” in 60 minutes by the Neo-Futurists. Now I sit at a cafe, typing this, reminded that there is no better place to spend the summer than Chicago (with a little travel thrown in) and wondering what is in store for the remainder of these simmering months.
For more from Adam, check out his Innovation on my Mind Blog.