Hello from Atlanta, Georgia!
I did actually make it to Georgia, and I’ve been having a nice time. While Ryan works and schmoozes and talks and explains endless at the trade show, I’ve been having a nice time. On Thursday, one of my former BYU roommates met me at my hotel and we went adventuring together. We got our map and set out on foot to find the CNN building. We had an interesting tour. Did you know that the CNN building is home to the world’s largest freestanding elevator? The Building once housed an indoor amusement park built around the theme of the old H.R. Puffenstuff cartoon show. It was called the World of Sid and Marty Croft. When the Amusement park went out of business, Ted Turner soon bought the entire complex and renamed it CNN Center. Who knew?
Unfortunately, they did not allow us to take any pictures while on the tour. One of my favorite parts of the tour was when they let us sit at a mock anchor desk and read “the news”. Their photographer took a picture of the two of us at the news desk which we could purchase for a mere $20. Cough. No, thanks.
We walked through the Atlanta Centennial Olympic Park, and then looked for someplace to have lunch. Honestly, it was SO hot that all this walking was making me so hot and sweaty and tired, I just wanted to sit ANYWHERE that was inside and air conditioned. We chose the Hard Rock Cafe. We had a super fun waiter who was sweet and charming, even though he called me “Mama”. I’m not used to THAT. He said he wanted to be a motivational speaker. Laurie and I had a fun time catching up and discussing our lives, our kids, and all that has been going on.
After lunch, we walked and walked and actually got a little bit lost trying to find my huge hotel. Once I looked up, there it was. We just adjusted our course and found our way back. It was so much fun to visit with her, and I’m so glad she braved the traffic to come and visit with me.
I then called Ryan and asked how his day was going at the show. I told him where I had been, and he said, “The convention center is a block away from the CNN. You should have just taken the shuttle to the show and then walked a block down hill.” Well, then. So, I put on more deoderant, powdered my sweaty face and took the shuttle bus to the show to say hi to Ryan. I finally found the Control 4 booth and found him. He was busy talking to everyone, so I just set out on my own to peruse the show floor and look for cool “stuff” for my kids. I walked around for two hours until I could take no more. My feet were killing me. I found a place to sit down, drank from my water bottle and called the kids.
When Ryan was done, we came back to the hotel, dumped our stuff, and then met some of Ryan’s work buddies to go to dinner. We had a fabulous dinner at Ted’s Montana grill. It was fun to get to know some of the people Ryan works with, and hear their praise for his knowledge and abilities. And the food was GREAT, too.
The next day Ryan went off to the convention center, and I slept in a bit. I had a meeting planned with another of my BYU roommates who also lives near Atlanta. Lisa picked me up at my hotel and took me to the Atlanta Cyclorama and Civil War Museum. It was FASCINATING! This HUGE painting depicting the battle of Atlanta has been made into a diorama.
*The circumference of the painting is 358 ft.
*The painting covers 15,030 sq. ft.
*The depth of the display is 30 ft.
*The painting alone weighs more than 10,000 lbs.
While the history of the battle was interesting, I really was drawn in by the history of the painting! It was commissioned in 1885, traveled with the circus, and eventually was donated to the city of Atlanta. You should read about it. Amazing!
We laughed as we walked, turned around, asked for directions, and walked some more. We found the underground, and I felt conspicuously white. I was glad I was with Lisa, because she’s used to being a minority, but we were seriously the only white people there. We had fun, though, eating, laughing, and looking around the shops. We both tried on some INSANELY high shoes that I can only classify as “hooker heels”. We didn’t walk in them, we could barely just stand there without falling.
Lisa dropped me off at the convention center, where I met up with Ryan and managed to pull him away from work a little bit early. Even though it was hot and we were sweating, we walked the long few blocks over to the world of Coke museum.
It was fun! We saw all the coke memorabilia, there was a 4-d movie experience that was hokey. Our favorite was tasting all the flavors of soft drinks from around the world. “Beverly” and “Stoney” were both NaSTY!! Who would drink those? And so many of the flavors were SO sweet and fruity.
After all those weird flavors, when we sampled the regular coke flavors that we know, it tasted weird. It was a fun tour, and something I wanted to see (Ryan joked that it was the “mother land” for me), and I’m glad Ryan could get away to see it with me.
That night we went to a private party for Control 4 at some trendy club. It was loud, but the food was good and even though I didn’t know anyone, it was fun. We were both exhausted by 9, so we decided to bow out. We took a taxi back to the hotel and pretty much fell into bed.
Saturday Ryan went to work and I decided to take the day off. I stayed in bed until I felt like getting up. After showering, I decided to explore the hotel, and found there’s a connecting “mall”. It’s really just a glorified food court with a few stores, but they call it a mall. And you can go through the skywalk from this hotel. After lunch I found the hotel pool. I spent the afternoon reading my book by the pool. When I got too hot, I would swim for a bit, then get out and read some more.
There was no work to do, no emails to answer, no PTA stuff to worry about, no kids to take care of, nothing. It was wonderful.
Except that I didn’t bring any sunscreen (who thinks about sunscreen at the end of September?) and my shoulders and chest seem to be quite burned.
When we get home, I’ll post more pictures and tell you about the rest of our adventure! Bye for now.