AITP & Oklahoma City!

i’m sitting at our gate at the airport in OKC waiting to board the plane. i almost missed boarding the plane due to blogging so i had to finish writing this post on campus. :wink:

our trip to oklahoma city was… eventful. to say the least. the first night was spent partying in the hotel with everyone. the other half of the group missed their connection flight so they did not get to oklahoma city until around 11PM. while they were driving from the tulsa airport, the rest of the guys and i did some exploring and ate dinner at the bricktown brewery and wandered around downtown. they are very proud of their heritage in oklahoma. metal buffaloes are everywhere. literally.

Bricktown

the first and most important thing i learned about oklahoma city–the wind never stops blowing. it can be sunny and warm, but when that wind sweeps in, your body temperature drops about 15 degrees instantly. not really, but it feels that way. i’m the genius who forgot to pack a coat.

on friday, kim, anna, and i took a cab to the mall. i will never take a cab again for as long as i can go without getting one. :mad: they are so expensive–it was $17 and $15 back. the whole purpose of going to the mall was to get a suit jacket since i left mine at adam’s by mistake. his roommate mailed my jacket and skirt but i think they got lost in the mail. they never arrived at my apartment. so i spent $35 on a jacket to go with the pants i brought. i ended up liking my new jacket more than my other one, which was nice. i’m glad i didn’t end up wasting $35 on part of a suit i’d only wear for 2 nights of a conference.

that night was spent partying in the hotel with everyone. i’m starting to notice a trend. the guys and anna made a trip to the liquor store. they had trouble getting a cab back so a 5 minute trip ended up taking about 2 hours. we hung out at the hotel for a while and then got prettied up to go out to dinner. we ate at the spaghetti warehouse which was a damn good dinner for a damn good price. that’s one thing we all noticed about OKC. everyplace we went to eat had fantastic service. our waiters and waitresses were all been incredibly nice and nothing we ordered got screwed up. even at IHOP! that’s almost unheard of for a group of 13 people.

Spaghetti Warehouse

we were planning on going out after dinner but everyplace we wanted to go had a pretty steep cover and not everyone wanted to pay that much to go out. we ended up hanging out downstairs at the hotel bar and i met a group of guys from texas that bought me a few drinks. we all sat and talked until the bar closed. i thought the rest of my group had gone to bed but it turns out they were all upstairs in the other room laughing hysterically at pretty much nothing. :) i went up and joined them just in time to get a ton of ridiculous pictures before the night was over.

Hotel Party

Hotel Party

on the last day of the conference, we all woke up bright and early. i had my paper presentation at 8:30AM so it was rough running on 4 hours of sleep. that was my fault–oh well. my presentation went really well and everyone complimented me afterward which was nice. :happy: AITP held another luncheon for us and gave us cheesecake for dessert. i ate more of the cheesecake than i did of the main meal. o_0 too many vegetables.

my friend chris lined up a brewery tour that afternoon of a local brewery that just opened up–COOP Ale Works. it’s a small brewery but it was very impressive. they planned it for 3 years before opening it up and they are 100% green. i tried samples of 3 different beers. :full: my favorite was their DNR Belgian Style Golden Ale. not because it was 10%, but because it was 10% and unbelievably delicious. i can honestly say it’s the first and only beer i’ve drank that i truly enjoyed drinking. maybe it’s the cinnamon, but it is amazing. you can follow them on Twitter!

COOP Ale Works

after the brewery tour, we went back to the hotel and got back in our suits to go to the AITP banquet that night. the dinner was the best food they’d provided the entire conference. so good that i ate my plate and denny’s plate. they had the awards ceremony and lots and lots and LOTS of talking about… not a whole lot. :yawn: it was a nice banquet, but everyone could have stood for it to be a lot shorter. at one point, one of the wireless mics in another room was turned on and caused this horrible, teeth-clenching screeching sound for about 10 minutes at which point a lot of people decided that was enough for them for the night.

COOP Ale Works

the banquet ended around 9 and everyone headed back to the hotel. i have to wait until everyone else empties their cameras that i, due to the chaos that night, completely filled up. :look: i have so much video (3 cameras worth) that i can’t really do anything with but it will be fun to look back on. there are also a lot more pictures that i am looking forward to seeing–specifically ones of me posing with various metal animals/objects in bricktown. giant buffaloes, penguins, guitars… i can’t wait. the only thing that i can say disappointed me about this trip was not being able to spend more time in texas. :grr:

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