Day 0: The Flight, Pre-Registration, and Long Walks
I was up at the usual time and ready and waiting for the Aeroport Limo service to arrive at 9:00 AM … the flight was at 11:45 and I wanted to ensure I would be at the airport in plenty of time. Aside from some minor turbulence, the flight itself was rather uneventful … and the California Roll Sushi for lunch in flight on Air Canada 755 was actually pretty good, too.
I rolled into the hotel right at check-in, the flight was early so this was a timely good fortune.
I got settled in, unpacked, and called my wife on FaceTime. We chatted for a little while then I headed off to the Automattic Head Quarters for pre-registrations and volunteer orientation. I was scheduled as a “Casual Runner”.
On my way into Automattic, I ran into Kim … a down-to-earth lady and very much the same person offline as on; something I noticed with almost every person I met that I had previously only known via social networking and/or various interactions on forums, mailing lists and IRC chats.
Afterwards, I walked back to the hotel and then wandered up 8th Street to the Harvest Urban Market to pick up some fresh fruit (and, as it happens, my favorite beer Stella Artois).
Saturday, first thing came early … I needed to be at the Mission Bay Conference Center by 7:00 AM. I set my alarm for 5:30 AM. Got myself organized and headed out the hotel door just after 6:30 AM. Although still before dawn, it was a beautiful walk down 7th Street with a jog over to Owen and finishing up at “Mission Bay” right at 7:00 AM.
Once I got myself organized and sorted out Andy (the volunteer organizer) asked me to help Nick with getting the Swag Store set up. With the help of Nowell, Jenny, Courtney, Marko and a few others we managed to get everything taken care of and ready to role well before the 9:00 AM “opening” time. To finish up everything, I made the first purchase at the Swag Store to ensure the “connections” were all working correctly.
During the rest of my volunteer shift I met Aaron, Andrea R, and Andrea M as well as many more. The Lipinski brothers from CyberChimps, Guillermo Rauch (who presented Socket.IO) and I had an interesting discussion related to theme review guidelines as well.
To end my shift, I helped Michael with the vegan/vegetarian/gluton-free special dietary table prior to lunch being served.
This left me with the afternoon free which I more or less spent in the upstairs presentation room. Mark Jaquith‘s talk on using Backbone.js was quite notable and left me with some ideas to consider for future projects, too.
I have met many people over the last few days and look forward to the next few days working closely with some and meeting even more … if we met and I did not happen to make note of you specifically, please feel free to remind me in the comments below.
PS: For anyone counting, I only collected seven T-shirts during this WordCamp. There were more available but I had to keep in mind the limited space I have for packing things to return home with.