Claudia Osmond ~ Reader, Writer, and Ruminator

The Great American ALA Tour Recap

In Uncategorized on January 17, 2010 at 11:49 pm

I’m not pooped anymore. So there will be many words.

Timeline and highlights, bullet-style:

Thursday, January 14, 2010

* leave home @ approx. 9am

* arrive, suffering from no traveling stress whatsoever, in Albany @ approx. 6ish pm (give or take an hour – can’t quite remember. does it really matter?)

* realize phone’s been roaming for last 5 hours – GASP!

* try to get wifi without roaming. No luck! Grrr…. Turn off phone.

* eat, drink, sleep

Friday, January 15, 2010

* leave Albany @ approx. 11am

* nerves kick in around noon – skip lunch

* get lost in Boston tunnel (twice) and confused re: u-turns (twice) @ approx. 1:30pm

* arrive, suffering from mondo traveling stress, at Boston hotel @ approx. 2pm

* connect to hotel internet service as soon as room door is opened due to withdrawal

* pull self away from computer to shower

* meet editor Kallie (for the first time, ever) in hotel lobby @ 4:30pm. Think she’s just as sweet as she sounds on the phone.

* catch shuttle to exhibition centre

* arrive @ exhibition centre @ approx. 5:15pm

* find boxes of books and set up signing table

* try to get conference centre wifi without roaming so I can tweet. No luck. Double grrr….. Turn off phone.

* sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign (etc…) for next two hours

* smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile (etc…) for same two hours

*got to talk to awesome people including Publishers Group West folk, librarians, authors

* catch shuttle back to hotel @ approx. 7:45pm

* enjoy an AMAZING sushi dinner with Kallie and David

* return to room @ approx. 11:30pm

* write quick blog post

* crash

Saturday, January 16, 2010.

* a 7:45am bleary-eyed meeting at Starbucks with Kallie to discuss “top-secret-business” 🙂

* catch 8:30am shuttle to exhibition centre

* crowds begin @ 9am

* sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign sign (etc…) for the next hour and a half til all books are GONE

* smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile (etc…) for the same hour and a half til all books are GONE

* wander exhibit hall and collect FREE books like they’re the last books that will ever be printed (so, so much awesome talent!)

* drag bags full of books onto shuttle and head back to hotel

* chill for a bit

* go for lunch

* shop a bit for the loved ones I left @ home so they won’t mind if I do this again another time

* freshen up and head back to exhibition hall so I can find my way to the ALA Tweetup!

* attend Tweetup – awesome, awesome, awesome!

* try again to get wifi without roaming to I can tweet the Tweetup. No luck. Triple grrrr…. Turn off phone. (See, part of the deal with the Tweetup was that you were to tweet about the people you meet AS YOU’RE MEETING THEM)

* meet amazing people

* talk to amazing people

* pick up a book at the book swap (I got 8TH GRADE SUPERZERO)

* say goodbye to amazing people

* make my way back to exhibition hall only to see that it’s empty, it’s dark, it’s closed. And for some strange reason, I’m all alone. Find security guard and he tells me all shuttles back to my hotel STOPPED AN HOUR AGO!!!

* ask a random guy with “transportation authority” on the back of his shirt why the heck there aren’t any shuttles and if he can please get me one since he’s got the authority of transportation. He says it’s a no-go but I can take the subway. “It’s easy,” he says. “Just hop on the silver line, then on the red line, then on the green line–” “Uh, I get lost in my own city,” I say. “Then you might want to get a cab,” he says. “Thanks a lot,” I say. I go outside where I see two cops. I ask them if there’s an easy way to get to Copley Square. They say, “Oh yeah, take the subway. It’s easy. Just hop on the silver line, then the red line, then the green–” I decide to just get a cab. I spot a group of people waiting for taxis at a hotel entrance across the street. I approach and boldly ask if anyone’s going to Copley Square who would want to share a taxi with me. Everyone within earshot either ignores me or says no. I go to the back of the line. One older gentleman leaves his place in line and comes to me and whispers, “I think those two ladies over there are going where you’re going. I overheard them talking before.” I go to the two ladies, ask, and yes they are going to Copley Square. And they’d be happy to share a taxi with me. Whew! I turn and mouth “thank you” to the kind old gentleman who left his place in line to help me.

* (that last one was a long bullet-style bullet, wasn’t it?) Obviously a highlight of my weekend.

* arrive safe and sound back at the hotel after a lovely taxi ride

* write quick blog post and tweet the names of the tweeps I met at the Tweetup – the names I had to write on PAPER with INK b/c I couldn’t get my blasted phone to pick up the wifi without roaming during the Tweetup.

* crash

Sunday, January 17, 2010

* sleep in (yeah!)

* have coffee and then leave hotel around 11:30am

* as mentioned in previous blog post: get lost coming OUT of Boston (although my navigational skills land me in wrong places all the time – with or without GPS – I must say that had I not had the GPS I may be in Key West right about now. Which, depending on how you look at it, may not be such a bad thing)

* once out of Boston, drive homeward bound

* make it to Syracuse to spend the night

* get lost in the city before using GPS to find a hotel outside of the city

* eat, drink, sleep

Monday, January 18, 2010

* leave hotel – drive a couple hours

* spot outlet mall from the highway – but too late. Take next exit and turn around

* shop a bit more

* get back on road for couple hours

* spot mall – shop a bit more

* finally cross border (THIS guy was decent)

* am once again able to use my phone!

* arrive home @ approx. 7pm where I’m greeted at the door with sloppy kisses (from the dogs) and warm hugs (from the rest of the mammals I live with)

So, there you have it. My Great American ALA Tour all wrapped up. What a great experience. Thanks Simply Read Books for the opportunity. And thanks to you for following along via blog.

Hey, anyone wanna do the road trip with me next time??

**if interested, see previous posts for a bit more detail and pics**

  1. Sounds like you had a great and busy time!=) Welcome back!

  2. I was gonna say, 'Wish I could have been there,' but after that account… 🙂

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