It’s the third day, which means it’s the third lunch. It appears to be a Chipotle mock-up, with a bed of Spanish rice, dark beans, Barbacoa, and the usual dollops of pico, guac, and sour cream. I’ll enjoy it as I have the rest of my lunches: with an eye toward WordPress and Basecamp.

Things are teeming here at halfwheel. Writers are methodically moving through booths, posts are streaming out constantly, and the mood is a mix between exhaustion and accomplishment. Around me sits a collage of sticky notes with booth names, rough schedules and commentary necessary for me to appropriately save, trim, upload or otherwise polish content for halfwheel.com.

Though the relentless whirl of the Palazzo bar continues far-off and unabated, the best part of my experience here—I am slowly discovering—has been learning, smoking and trafficking in the eclectic universe of cigars. Make no mistake, the above is not a compliment paid for by the halfwheel team, but a simple, private observation.

These lunch posts have pulled me out of the mania of posting and let me reflect on the time spent here in this booth, usually alone, occasionally with others. Most times, I pause and feel a baffled wonder at world I knew nothing about, and then a tide of desire to somehow stay linked with its fascinating madness.

Editor’s Note: this food wasn’t great. — C.M.

Drew Estate is the sponsor of halfwheel's coverage of the 2021 PCA Convention & Trade Show

Kyle Ferrer

A recent graduate of Wake Forest University, I came to halfwheel via a previous WFU editorial assistant, Heather Haertel. In the fall, I am returning to Wake Forest to pursue a masters in English literature. As you might have guessed, I am a reader—mostly of British and American Romanticism, which means the works of Wordsworth, Emerson, Whitman and others. I also watch a boatload of 70s movies, some men's tennis, and have an aspiring blog called wagingpages.com, where I write about whatever cultural notion pops into my head. I value highly the maxim that art is long and life is short.