I just got back from a short business trip to Orlando, Florida, home of DisneyWorld and SeaWorld. I was presenting some talks about the project I work on at a conference for our customers. The conference was held in one of the resort hotels just outside DisneyWorld.




Early morning was my favorite time. It was cool, misty from the overnight rain, with the moss hanging in the trees, and quiet as I walked past the herb garden.



The conference started early each morning in the hotel’s conference center. My talks went very well, with a full room for each of my sessions and lots of questions from the audience. Afterwards, walking back to my room through the afternoon sun, heat, and humidity was like being in a sauna. For the vacationers in and around the pool it was probably great, but it was a little tough on this 10-year Californian in “business attire” carrying a heavy computer bag. :-) One day my room key didn’t work, so I had to go back out into the heat to go to the front desk to get it fixed, then back again to my room. After these three walks, I was completely soaked!


The last evening of the conference it was party time! The conference rented out one of the local resorts, SeaWorld’s Discovery Cove, and bused us all over for an evening of great food, drink, desserts, and relaxation on a beach.


There was a reggae band and a dolphin show. I had bought a Hawaiian shirt at the hotel gift shop which made the heat easier to take, and an obliging drink cart server kept my big glass of ice full! :-) And as sunset came the temperature came down as well, and the evening became very comfortable.

orlando09 orlando10

One of the best parts of going to a conference is seeing in person many of the people that I normally only work with via email or phone. Here is Gordon from the east coast.


Here is Michael also from the east coast. Gordon and Michael work directly with customers, and are two of the main users of the performance reports that my team publishes. Next to Michael is Sundar, from the same California development team that I’m on.


Here are Mimi,Laura, and Martin, also from California.


Here is Jerre, one of our developers from the east coast, intentionally making a funny face. Next to him is Ken from our California team.


Here are Phil and Bernie, who flew in for the conference from England. They work with European customers like Gordon and Michael do with U.S. customers.


The next day after I finished my last presentation and answered the last customer question, I had to dash to the airport to try to catch my flight. Fortunately I got to the airport in time. As we flew west I could see the afternoon thunderstorms beginning to build up over Florida, Alabama, and Mississippi.

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