Archives for September 2011

Thursday, September 29, 2011 – Advanced Workshop Day Two

Had another productive day, everyone made great advanced and seemed pleased, apparently getting out of it what they had hoped to get. Tried some other things a bit differently, and they all worked great with this group. Might not with everyone, but certainly did with this group. At the end of the day, one of the attendees, who is about to go into court, asked us if we would consider spending some time with him tomorrow. We agreed on a rate and time, and set off to happy hour at the managers reception. Nice to get the work, but I was kind of ready to crash but work comes first, I can always crash later!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011 – Advanced Workshop Day One

Reacquainted ourselves with our former students for the advanced workshop (though one had just been through the basic camp, not something we usually allow but had slipped through the cracks on the other end), and got to work. My friend Steve also came to the class, as he continues on his training to becoming a possible surrogate teacher eventually. Again, a very productive and energizing day. Had dinner with Steve and our seminar planner, though Hubby begged off, still tired from the recent trials. We ended up going to the Kobe Steakhouse, one of those Japanese Hibachi chef in your face places. It was enjoyable, though again, I kept my intake to a minimum. Figured maybe if I lost a few pounds as a result of last weeks food poisoning, I should try to keep it off! It was a good time anyway, sorry Hubby missed it.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011 – Basic Workshop Day Two

Another good day in the workshop. We recently changed a few things about how it is conducted, which gives everyone a chance to get up twice, which has been about the only improvement that had been suggested by previous attendees, and it seemed to go over well. This time we did go out with our seminar planner to Uno’s across the street, and we both had small meals just to keep our systems straight. A good day, a good training camp.

Monday, September 26, 2011 – Basic Workshop Day One

Slept like a rock (though I had to put in earplugs to block out the traffic noise from I-4 right next door), woke up feeling better than I had in days. We went downstairs for the free hot breakfast, then went to work. It was an excellent class, with a very attentive and involved group, and I almost made it through the day unscathed, though in the last hour or so I was starting to flag. Usually I can boost myself up to a higher level when that starts to happen, but I just didn’t have the reserves this time. Nevertheless the group remained involved till the very end of the day. Hubby and I were both so exhausted, though, we had to postpone our usual dinner with our seminar planner, had another bowl of soup and were in bed even earlier.

Sunday, September 25, 2011 – Move to Embassy Suites Jamaican Court

Embassy Atrium

Packed up everything, had breakfast at the nearby Denny’s across from the Convention Center (where we had some of the best service we’ve experienced so far in Orlando!), then headed down to our new digs at the Embassy Suites on Jamaican Court. Before leaving the Rosen Plaza, I asked to speak with the manager regarding our food poisoning incident, and he was very unhelpful. First he chastised me for not telling him sooner “when he could have done something,” though what that would have been wasn’t clear, then when I told him about the tap water being added to the soup, he insinuated that Hubby didn’t actually see what he saw, that the water was probably going into “the steamer tray,” which was a ridiculous accusation, then again, indicated that I shouldn’t have waited so long to tell him, how it was too late. Well, I don’t know why it would be too late to fix what is apparently a systemic problem, but in his mind there was nothing he could or would do at this point. Very unhappy (angry actually) I left shaking my head. So despite decent rooms and service in other areas, I left the hotel extremely dissatisfied. Anyway, after breakfast we confirmed there was a microwave and refigerator in our room at the Embassy Suites, and headed out to Wal-mart to do some shopping. Checked into a typical Embassy room, which is very good by most standards and settled in. We had finally had a pretty good night sleep the night before, and our systems seemed to be just about purged, so we were beginning to feel better at last. Good thing, too, because it would be really hard to conduct an all-day workshop tomorrow if I wasn’t back to my normal energetic self! Had some soup (Healthy Choice microwaveable in the bowl) from Wal-mart with rice cakes, almost back to our regular diet, then was in bed by 9:00.

Saturday, September 24, 2011 – Florida Straw Poll-Very Exciting!

Worst Lighting Ever

Woke up still feeling lousy, but at the least the diarrhea seems to have gone away. I was determined to try to see more of the events today, so after a light breakfast, we headed over to the Convention Center where we watched the speeches of some of the candidates or their surrogates, and some didn’t even bother to send surrogates. The actual speakers were Rick Santorum, who did nothing but talk about himself (a losing strategy in our book), Newt Gingrich (who is always entertaining, but is still a bit vague about any actual plans or agenda other than the usual manta of lower taxes and private job creation), and Herman Cain, who frankly, ROCKED THE HOUSE!! He has a great no-nonsense style and a great message, with clear and easy to understand plans that might actually work, or at least start a dialogue that goes in the right direction toward something that might work. It would be great if he could get some traction here. He had a good performance on Thursday, albeit they didn’t give him much of a chance to speak because he’s not considered a top tier candidate, but he makes more sense than any of them in my book. And apparently not just my book, he impressed a lot of people here and ended up winning the straw poll by a HUGE margin!! It was incredibly exciting, because I don’t think anyone believed that anyone but them voted for Herman, so when the numbers came up there was as much disbelief at first as there was ecstasy later. He was impressive, and this should wake up the rest of the country to at least listen to him and judge for themselves, rather than having the media or the RNC pick them for us. Anyway, we were feeling just well enough afterwards to decide to have dinner at a restaurant in the Peabody on the walk back to our hotel, and enjoyed a nice but very slow meal there, which included some nice red meat for which we both had a craving. Our client happened by and spoke to us for a few minutes as well, so overall the day went as well as it could have done, even though neither of us were yet 100 percent. We were one our way, though! Just exhausted and weakened from the experience.

Friday, September 23, 2011 – Food Poisoning!! Still had to work!

Woke up to a very strange feeling, then discovered that before I could even move, I had an attack of awful diarrhea. It was terrible! My stomach was upset, I had to keep making trips to the bathroom with a towel in my hand, cramps, just plain feeling terrible!. Turned out Hubby had the same thing, though not quite as bad. Obviously, it was the soup. We had to stay in the room all morning just to recover enough to get dressed and go downstairs to the gift shop to buy Pepto Bismol. We both felt awful. The PB helped after awhile, and we finally managed to get dressed in our work clothes and go meet our client for a short while, but it was tricky making sure that we were never far from a bathroom. Nothing worse than a bout of food poisoning! We managed to get some food down eventually, but soup was definitely off the menu! At one point, Hubby noticed that a woman at the grill poured tap water into the soup on the warmer, without heating it back up to a boil, which explains to me how the food poisoning developed! My mamma taught me that when I was just a kid! How can something like that happen? Hard to imagine in this day and age. Anyway, we survived the day, but were completely wrung out by the evening, happy to crawl back in bed with another dose of Pepto.

Thursday, September 22, 2011 – Work with Client Day

Met up with our client at a room in the Peabody across the street for several hours, preparing him for several presentations he would be making throughout the weekend. Smart guy, picks up things fast, it’s a pleasure to work with him. Stopped for ice cream on our way back to the hotel. In the evening, we decided to go downstairs for some soup, and discovered that the Cafe was only serving off the buffet, and to get $3 soup we needed to pay for the $9.99 Soup and Salad Buffet! Crazy, but they wouldn’t separate it. So we ended up going to the grill in the lobby and got two bowls of chicken noodle soup. After that we headed out to the Convention Center to attend the Fox News Republican Presidential Debate, which our client was kind enough to arrange for us. I don’t know who was managing the house, but it was one of the worse jobs I’ve ever seen. They had an entire area of about 200 seats cordoned off for “VIP’s” but only about a dozen of them were used. When the order was finally given to open that section to the public, a mad crush of people surged in like a dam bursting. People were going crazy climbing over chairs and running down aisles. People came in from both sides, so many were fighting over seats in the middle. It was nuts, and it’s a miracle someone didn’t get hurt. I don’t know whose genius idea that was, but they should be fired. It’s outrageous, and yet we see that kind of thing all the time, amateurs in charge of events they have no business being in charge of. Anyway, we survived it, and ended up enjoying the debate and the rest of the evening. Not impressed with most of the candidates these days, seriously wondering what kind of chance a Republican has against Obama if this is the best we can do. Eventually headed back to the hotel and off to bed anticipating we would be working with our client again tomorrow, at least for a short time.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011 – Travel Day to Orlando

New Backyard in Orlando

Due to the duration of this trip, we decided is would be more cost effective to take a cab to the airport, and he arrived right on schedule, getting us to the airport in plenty of time. Unfortunately, the flight was posted as being delayed for half an hour, but then somewhere along the line it got back on schedule, so we arrived just about on time. Picked up a little stripped down Chevy Aveo (such a downturn from my Mustang!), but since we don’t have all that much actual driving to do, it will be good enough. For $11 bucks a day, who can complain? Arrived at the Rosen Plaza Hotel just up from the Orange County Convention Center where the bulk of the activities were to be held. Checked into a nice room on the 16th floor, so it was nice and quiet except for the A/C which was a window unit, though it was ten times better than the hotel in Chicago where we stayed earlier this month. Ordered Chinese as has become our habit on the first day of our arrival, and went to bed early.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011 – Vet Day for Marina

With Marina still limping heavily, we decided to run her over to our hostess’ vet, and they were kind enough to fit her in. The diagnosis is still arthritis, so an anti-inflammatory was prescribed, something else our hostess will have to do in our absence, unfortunately. She’s perfectly capable, of course, I just hate to keep piling stuff on her to do, what with giving Apollo his allergy meds, not Marina more pills. Nothing we can do at this point, however, we just have too many things going on right now!