The Gaylord Opryland Hotel!

Six of us went to a phenomenal conference by ASCD (CLICK HERE!!!) at the Gaylord  Opryland Hotel in Nashville, TN.  There were about 2900 attendees, and the hotel did not even seem full, except at lunch time when everyone was scrambling for a meal.

It’s like a cruise ship that’s 10 times larger than any other cruise ship, that has more to do on it than any other cruise ship ever built, only it never goes anywhere.  Quite an amazing place. It’s on a plot of land that contains 3.5 mile long mall (if you were to walk all through it, and is also adjacent to the Grand old Opry, so it’s got built-in entertainment that is top quality (if you like country music).

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The hotel covers 47 acres of land and is expanding this next year to include an additional 400,000 square feet, most of which will be conference space but which will include an additional 400 rooms.  Note that it currently has over 2800 rooms. Here’s a photo of the room I had a the hotel (see above).  Notice the 32″ flat screen LCD TV with on demand movies, notice the cool round pillows too plus the other four pillows on each bed–cool.  I talked to the maid for my room and she said that she was responsible for cleaning 16 of the rooms–she does a great job–almost as good as Holly at making the bed.

IMG_7585 Here’s a view of 1/2 of one the three atriums in the place.  The roundish brick structure about half-way back is a restaurant/bar that rotates!  Wow!  Notice the glass ceiling that encloses the plants–this area is climate controlled year-round and is absolutely stunning.

IMG_7513Here’s one of the plants  pictured below.  Obviously someone there, really knows how to grow plants.

I took a ton of photos here as you might well imagine and will hopefully find some time to blog about the rest of the hotel at some later point.  As for what we learned at the conference, that’s too long to blog about, but I will say that we should start heading in new directions on certain things this next year and in the years to come.

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Wisdom comes with age… Or does it?

I thought this one was funny…  Enjoy.

A guy is 80 years old and loves to fish. He was sitting in his boat the other day when he heard a voice say,

‘Pick me up.’He looked around and couldn’t see any one. He thought he
was dreaming when he heard the voice say again,’Pick me up.’

He looked in the water and there, floating on the top, was a frog.

The man said, ‘Are you talking to me?’

The frog said, ‘Yes, I’m talking to you. Pick me up,then kiss me and
I’ll turn into the most beautiful woman you have ever seen.

‘I’ll make sure that all your friends are envious and jealous because I
will be your bride!’

The man looked at the frog for a short time, reached over, picked it up
carefully, and placed it in his front breast pocket.

Then the frog said, ‘What, are you nuts? Didn’t you hear what I said? I
said kiss me and I will be your beautiful bride.’

He opened his pocket, looked at the frog and said,

‘Nah, at my age I’d rather have a talking frog.’

So I went through Chicago…

The photo below was taken in Chicago…

IMG_6849 I had to leave the fishing grounds early to go to a teacher conference in Nashville, TN.  It was tough leaving the grounds because we were making pretty decent money and the weather was still calm.  I hope that’s a harbinger of things to come.

I was really tired during the entire trip because I slept only three hours on Sunday and four hours on Monday.  It took three hours to get from the fishing grounds just off Mab Island to the slip where I tied up my boat in Auke Bay. 

The next day, I woke up at four and went to take a shower.  Note to self: bring quarters to the harbor next time I want to take a shower.  I got to the shower so early there was nowhere to get any change, so I started preparing for the shower without a towel from the sink routine, but then I discovered that my taxi arrived 15 minutes early and so I went outside and got some quarters from him.  They really do have some nice facilities there at Auke Bay (Juneau’s northern small boat harbor) and it was rally nice to get cleaned up.

On the way to Nashville, we went through SeaTac Chicago.  I love both those airports.  The hallways are so big and dramatic.  Above is a shot of one of the concourses.  What I really like is the curved glass windows

IMG_6837In Seattle, I ate a HUGE burrito at the Qdoba Mexican Grill at the food court Pavilion that overlooks the tarmac.  It was delicious, but ungainly.  Instead of making a tubular shape out of the burrito, they folded it into a square.  Bummer.

In general, I dislike traveling, but I do like seeing the airports and going into the bookstores to look at the new titles.