Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Traveling to Toronto for ISPI Conference

This post is part of a multiple part Series on the 2012 Performance Improvement Conference.

As promised in my previous post, I will be blogging about my experience at the ISPI Conference, so the next several posts will be a slightly different format than my normal approach.

Right now I am at airport in Columbus, Ohio, waiting for the flight to leave for Chicago and then on to Toronto for the conference. As recommended, I am here 2 hours early, so I get to spend my time in an uncomfortable seat sitting around people I don't know. I am looking forward to the conference, though I am usually less than comfortable on the flight. I find that I subconsciously worry about three general things when flying:
  1. Someone might steal my bag. I know this is really a pretty irrational fear, but I once had a really cool backpack stolen off a bus when I lived in Guatemala, and since then I have become what I call "cleptophobic."
  2. Getting sick on the flight. Not that I will actually puke or anything, but I always feel a little queasy. One time I was sitting on a flight next to a youth who's quartet had just won an award at an international barbershop quartet competition (not kidding). I felt awful the whole trip as he chattered continuously about the award, singing in a quartet, creating "overtones," the importance of the bass voice in a quartet, and his quartet's ambitions for taking the entire competition next year.
  3. Sitting next to the "stinky guy." I have been lucky with this one and usually sit with clean-smelling passengers, although once I did sit next to the "stinky guy" on a flight from California. The one thing that does worry me is that, since I never sit by the stinky guy, I might actually be the stinky guy...
So, we will see how the flights go. I am definitely excited for the conference and for the opportunity to expand my knowledge, skills, and abilities. And who knows, maybe I'll run into a member of an internationally acclaimed barbershop quartet....


Chris said...

I hope your flight went well.

joel gardner said...

Hello there, Chris! It actually went really well- no major problems, and I am now in Toronto. Had my first day of the HPT workshop and will blog about it tonight. Hope you guys are doing really well!

Lol said...

This may be the most delightful blog post I've ever read. Please don't act surprised when you see it as a column in the next GG!

joel gardner said...

Ha! Thanks, Lol! It was a fun post to write.

The conference has been absolutely wonderful, though I am quite ready to go home and see my girls. My brain is full, I am sick of restaurant food, and I want to sleep in my own home.