So I’m getting antsy to get down to Orlando. As much to start the geekfest of Lotusphere as to also get in some warm weather. It looks like the freeze in Florida is about over and the temps will be in the 70 to 75 degree range during the conference. This will be my first year staying at the Dolphin. I’m not sure what to expect being closer to the action, although I’ve been at the Boardwalk Villas the last 7 years, so I wasn’t THAT far away. It should be nice to just drop down for breakfast in the morning. I’ll miss the free internet though. I don’t think that the wireless will make it all the way up to a room, so I’ll have to hit one of the wi-fi spots downstairs for updating the iPod Touch apps and such. Staying at the Boardwalk Villas as a DVC member allowed me free internet access. Very nice.
So I bought a Belkin surge protector, the same one that Rockey Oliver reviewed in his blog . Allows me to forego the charger for my phone and iPod, as well as providing 3 protected outlets for laptops and battery charger. I also bought two 6-outlet powerstrips to share the all too scarce outlets in the session rooms. It’s always a hunt for the floor outlets and they now police the sessions to yank anyone’s charger out of the wall outlets.
My session planning is done (well, as much as it can be ahead of time). I can access my schedule from a mobile device, or without connectivity, I’ve downloaded and imported the .ics calendar file into my work Notes calendar. I’ll have both my personal BlackBerry and my bank BlackBerry with me. I only have data on my bank BB. And my personal BB has all my personal email access. In addition, I loaded my schedule on my iPod Touch. Of course, since it’s a personal device, there could be no synching with bank system. And since iTunes will only sync with Outlook, I had to *gasp* use Outlook to import the .ics file and then synch to the Touch. The Touch DOES present the schedule the nicest of all the devices. The only problem is I can’t change the schedule now unless I go through the whole process again, and my personal laptop has Notes 8.5.1 running on Ubuntu. So I’ll really have to use the browser in one of the devices to access the Lotusphere Online schedule if I want to have the current schedule and make changes to it real time.
So . . . power access – CHECK. Confusing scheduling options – CHECK. ScottEVest jacket to carry all this stuff – CHECK. Owner’s Locker scheduled for delivery – CHECK. Too many receptions and such to attend – YEP. I’m gonna need a vacation from this conference for sure.
Can’t wait. Only 11 more days to go. So much to attend this year in addition to two certification tests.
This will be the first time that I’ve stayed at the Dolphin. Usually, Pam accompanies me and we use our DVC points to stay in a 1-bedroom or studio villa at Boardwalk Villas. This year, Pam decided to stay home since I’ll be attending more evening events and we won’t be able to spend much time together. Just as well, since she usually spent a lot of time at the pool reading and it’s been COLD down in Orlando lately. Hope it warms up soon!
I’ll come back and edit this, but wanted to get this placeholder in now. Pam and I are going on a 4 night Disney cruise to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary next May. We will go to DisneyWorld on May 19th and stay there until Sunday morning when we’ll head over to Port Canaveral to board the Disney Wonder for a cruise to Nassau and Castaway Cay. This will be our first cruise and I’m REALLY pumped to go on this.
Almost 11:00pm on Wednesday as I write this entry about the start of our trip on Saturday morning. We had a problem with Internet access until Pam got a tech up here yesterday to fix the problem. Anyway . . .
We dropped our Labradoodle, Teddy, off at the groomer that boards him on Saturday morning around 7:15. Got home and while Pam was showering, I packed the car, washed the windows and even gave it a quick polish with the spray wax.
We got on the road at 8:30 and made it all the way to Exit 53 in South Carolina around 8:15 pm when we pulled into a Holiday Inn Express for the night. We had stopped for fuel about a half an hour earlier and the stats are all on Fuelly.com. I think we averaged about 43 mpg on the way down. Not too bad for our first long highway trip. I’m really impressed with the VW Jetta TDI. Lots of power for a little 4 banger diesel engine. The diesel fuel was 3 – 5 cents cheaper per gallon than regular unleaded, so that felt even better.
We took off at 8:30 Sunday morning and pulled into Old Key West Resort at Walt Disney World around 1:00pm. I had checked-in online on Friday so they would have everything ready when we pulled in, but I wasn’t confident that we’d have a room ready since check-in time is 4:00pm. But we lucked out and our room was ready. That was great since we were to be at Epcot that night for a D23 Event (more on that next entry).
After we got our room keys, we picked up our Owner’s Locker at Bell Services. The locker was empty since we just joined, but we had brought a lot of stuff down to fill ‘er up! For those that don’t know, head over to Owner’s Locker to get the low down. Here’s a quick explanation though. For a fee, we rent a ‘locker’ (large lockable plastic tub). It stays down here and Owner’s Locker stores it for us. They drop it off when we check in and pick it up when we leave. We store all sorts of stuff in there that we use each time we come down. Now we don’t have to drag the stuff back and forth.
We started unpacking and got ready to head over to Epcot for the D23 Event.
We’re using Owner’s Locker for the first time. They’ll deliver our new purple Locker right to Old Key West Resort and pick it up when we leave. Now we can store all the stuff we drag back and forth from Pennsylvania. It’ll be a great help, especially when we decide to fly down.