Man, oh, man! The South is wonderful and I have missed it. The City is great too, but there is something about coming back down here...the weather, the food, the people. It's been nothing but amazing!
We flew out on Sunday after an extremely long week of getting things shipped down to New Orleans and making all final plans for what we would need here. It was CRAZY! Adding to that, when Lana and I were getting on our flight, we were on the same flight with a colleague from the D.C. office whom we had never met and being picked up by yet another colleague whom we had never met. Things worked out perfectly though from timing to finding one another to getting back to our hotel in the city. It was great.
Our hotel is definitely one of the nicest I have ever stayed in! It has so much character and every room seems to be a bit different. Lana and I have a foyer, full kitchen, sitting room, and a master room with two double beds, nice furniture, a full vanity area, closet, and massive bathroom...oh yeah, and it's on the 17th floor with a great view of the Mississippi River! We so don't deserve this but we're certainly making the most of it.
Sunday we also got a quick look at the Interaction Center only to see that almost nothing had yet to be set up. Yesterday proved to be incredibly productive, as we were able to get almost all of Jackson Square assembled and painted. There is more to be done today but then the focus will quickly shift to our other space called Justice Town that needs tons of work. Wednesday at noon is "go time" so its running away from us quickly. It has definitely been fun to see everything come together from the ground up though and to get to know the staff so much better. It's an interesting group but we never cease to have a good time even while working and hauling stuff from one end to the other (the whole convention center is something crazy like 1.5 miles long and the ELCA is using nearly half for the Gathering - of course our spaces are not exactly close to one another - we have decided we will be getting plenty of exercise this week!) Oh and all the kids will start showing up today...this city is going to be bursting with energy which is great because we are going to be exhausted by the time we actually start and will need to feed off of them!
I should go get ready...got to be back at the IC in 45 mins for Day 2 of setup! Today we bring in the Uhaul and more stuff! Yay!