Yeah, I know...It's Friday. Deal.
**Authors note: I scheduled this to post last Friday, apparently that did NOT happen.
All week, people have been posting some of their favorite memories from the PASS Annual Summit. I am fortunate that for me, there are many to choose from. Some, people have heard me tell a few times, others I'm under strict NDA, so you'll just have to hang out and catch those as they happen!
My first, and still my fondest Summit memory is from my very first Summit, back in Orlando in the Year of the Hurricane. The Summit was actually delayed a day, but I had no trouble arriving on schedule, so I did what any Midwesterner would do when in Florida in November...I went to Epcot! That evening, it was time for the Welcome Reception at the resort, so I spruced up, pushed the elevator button and waited to descend 30-some-odd floors to the party.
It was on that fateful elevator ride I met my first other attendee at the Summit*. A nice-looking guy with glasses and a mischievous smile was wearing a badge and reading it, I happened to notice he was from Kansas City. Having grown up in St. Louis, and having spent a few years just outside of KC and visiting family there often (my home-away-from-home, truly), I felt an immediate kinship with this fellow Missourian, so I introduced myself. Being horrible with names, I was happy that his was easy to remember: Bill. Whew, nothing like trying to meet new people and forgetting their names...Bill would be easy enough to commit to memory. So we chatted for a minute or two about KC and the Summit and he learned this was my first time attending. I was really excited when he mentioned he would like to introduce me to some other people he knew attending, as I wasn't much looking forward to standing around at a big party with no one to talk to.
As we enter the party, my new friend looks around for his other 'people' and spots them several feet away.
"Hey DENISE! I have another one for you!" I hear him call. Now that made me giggle :) This wasn't my first technical conference, so I get it that women are few and far between at these things**. Plus, I could tell this guy was being genuine and he really was excited to help the ladies network. I spent the rest of the evening, and the Summit that year hanging out with my new found friends.
And, that, dear reader, is how I met Bill Graziano and Denise McInerny at my very first Summit!
*Okay, that's stretching it a tad, I did meet some other folks on the bus to Epcot.
**It's impressive how the percentage of female attendes has grown at Summit over the years.