Saturday, August 28, 2010

Some More Saturday and then, Sunday

I forgot to tell you!

Saturday afternoon I was sitting at the back of a session that overlapped another room where massage therapists were quietly giving chair massages. Sitting in my power chair, I was listening and knitting like Madame Defarge, when a woman crouched down next to me. It was one of the massage therapists and she whispered, “When the session is over, see me and I will give you a thorough hand and arm massage.”

Woo hoo!!

She didn’t have to tell me twice. I sought her out about twenty minutes later and we chatted while she worked my hands and arms. She was charming and interesting and soothing. We talked about the mystery of how we are drawn to people, as she said she was drawn to me that afternoon. We both believed that there is some sort of intangible connection that one sometimes never understands, but is there nonetheless. We talked about the power of alternative healing practices. We also discovered we had strong, loving ties still to our late grandmothers and viewed them as forces in our lives even though they were gone now. Altogether a fascinating and relaxing half an hour.

Also forgot to tell you…as the dinner in Tribeca was ending, one of the women there asked if anyone wanted one of the last flash drives that were being given out as a promotion. Out of, I guess, several hundred, a couple had $500 gift certificates to Target on them. Well, I wasn’t even considering the gift certificate, I needed a new flash drive for a project I was working on. So I jumped at grabbing one.

Got back to the hotel, hopped into my p.j.s, plugged in the flash drive and UP POPPED A $500 GIFT CERTIFICATE TO TARGET!!!!! AAAGGHHHH!!!! I couldn’t believe it. After contacting the Energizer Batteries, the contest sponsor, and after doing everything but signing my name in blood to prove I had received the flash drive under the proper circumstances, I received my card yesterday. New laptop, here I come!!! They also sent me a charger and four rechargable AA batteries. Now that is exciting.

Sunday

I had intended to go to church Sunday morning at St. Thomas Fifth Avenue, the magnificent Episcopal church one block from the hotel. I had even verified access with my chair. Unfortunately, I, who am up at 5 a.m. every morning of my life, overslept and never made the service.

Instead I went with Hurricane Danielle down to the lobby Starbucks and bought a massive latte. God subsequently punished me for missing church by having me knock the whole thing over after I had taken one sip, saturating the hotel room carpet with Starbucks. I tried soaking it up and thereby ruined several hotel towels. I am still waiting for a bill.

The lesson here? Set your alarm and go to church.

So we packed our swag and sundries and checked out one by one. The four days had flown. I sat in the lobby and waited for Mary Kate to pick me up. A few hairy moments were spent when I found out Sixth Avenue was closed for an obscure parade and Mary Kate had to find a different route to the hotel. But she, who had never driven in the city before, did fine. We were home in an hour.

Here are some of the remarkable fellow writer/bloggers I met:

Kiratiana Travels

Awesomely Luvvie

Sandy Martinez

simple.green.organic.happy

Danielle Liss

kb-in-nyc

amajuamarket

Nancy's Garden Spot

Black Belt Mama (sounds scary but was very sweet)

Thanks Mail Carrier

An Island Life

A Frugal Friend

Simply Cathi

Organized Life by Design



My overall take on the conference? It was interesting, but ultimately a little disappointing.

While there were many sessions to attend, a lot of them had similar themes and consequently felt somewhat repetitive. Considering the range of subjects we blog about, I think there could have been a better variety. While the idea of tracks was a good one to organize the sessions, it was also limiting in subject matter. Perhaps it would be better to simply have a wide variety of sessions not attached to any particular theme?

Another issue, the sheer size. There were so many people, it was difficult to cultivate sustaining conversations, never mind relationships. Although everyone had business cards, which did help me remember connections. Attempts to address this were made through various parties and get togethers. However, at the end of the day, I was too exhausted to get to those.

My mobility limitations had a huge impact on my participation in all events, but I am going to write a separate post on that.

On the plus side, I was thrilled several times to have strangers tell me they read, and love, my blog!!

I do know it took a massive, unfathomable amount of work to organize an event like this. And for that alone I give the BlogHer staff enormous credit and thanks.

Next year in San Diego? We’ll see.

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7 comments:

Pricilla said...

Oh congratulations. That is just wonderful. I'm thrilled for you.

Janiss said...

Wow, I didn't know you won a gift card! Congratulations!

I agree that the sheer size of BlogHer made it difficult to establish relationships, or even have a good conversation. Plus there were so many different types of bloggers there that everything seemed kind of homogenized, like they were trying to please everyone and often catered to the lowest common denominator. Even so, I am a little tempted to go again next year, mainly because it is in San Diego, only a couple of hours from my home and I can take the train down. We'll see.

Webster said...

I'm glad that you had a good time at BlogHer. Looking forward to reading about the accessibility issues you encountered.

That thing with the Starbucks? I've done it too!! One sip sloshers are we.

Marie said...

Pricilla: Thanks!! I never win anything, so I am psyched!

Janiss: How cool is that?!?! Never expected to win anything, I just wanted a flash drive. lol

It definitely as an interesting experience but I think size is getting the better of them. I can only imagine the work that went into the planning, so I feel terrible complaining. But sometimes by trying to please everybody you end up pleasing nobody.

With San Diego so close, I can see why you would go. That is why I went to the NYC one.

Webster: Well, I see I am in good coffee spilling company. lol Fortunately that is what the color of the carpet was, so little harm there. But the towels were goners. lol

Thanks for stopping by and leaving comments everyone!! xoxo

cardiogirl said...

No. Way! Congratulations; I guess this is the perfect example of it never hurts to ask.

Anyone want a flash drive?

Why yes, kind madame, I would like a flash drive. May I have it?

Yes you may.

Man, I want a laptop, too. Enjoy yours!

Becky said...

I am SO happy for you! congrats on your gift card - how fun. Interesting info on the conference. Next year in San Diego where my daughter lives could be a possibility!

HappySkinnyGirl said...

I've been thinking about you lately. Glad to hear from you! :)You seem to have a good time at Blogher conference, what an exciting event! I would love to hear the mystery of how we are drawn to people :)