So the final day dawned early, again at 6:20. Staggering somewhat sleepily, I still managed to get ready and drag all Deanna and I's stuff to Zack's room at 7:00. (I'd used my four days from Sunday to Wednesday nights, but he booked Monday to Thursday nights.) This at least meant we didn't have to haul everything to campus and back.It was another day of sessions, of which the last was just awesome. And then, sadly, it was over. Deanna and Shane Devenshire's wife shared a cab out to the closing lunch on campus, and we met up with them about a half hour late. (The last session ran long.) It was then a good buffet of mexican food and, at long last, time for the bottle...
Bob and I had arranged that he'd bring a special bottle of Scotch with him. For the past three days, Bob had dutifully been carrying it around with him, just waiting for the appropriate place to sample it.
I scooped a half dozen plastic beer cups (necessity begets sacrifice, okay?) and we settled down in the farthest region of the lunch tents. (Actually, that was coincidence, as it was the only table left.) The moment Bob fanned out the cups, though, the busser lady was over, asking if they needed to be cleaned up. LOL! With a big smile, she left when she saw Bob pull out the bottle. I will say, that after a sniff of the scotch, Andrew was the most awake we'd seen him all week.
And here's our final group photo from that day:
All in all, this was a great event, but way too short. Nick made a great post at Dick's Blog on what he learned about the MVP's, and I have some stuff of my own to say on that.
First off, there really is a secret decoder ring for the initiates. Without it, you won't get into the bathroom at the pub, so it's pretty important.
Second, I think it's a natural thing to wonder how the heck you got in to this club, and how well you'll fit in when you get there. I will say that I was pretty nervous about meeting these guys (and gal), but at the end of it I felt very warmly accepted by them. I cannot describe the feeling of being in the Excel sessions, discussing the issues and potentials of the product that I love, with the people whom I respect. It was very cool.
Catching the bus home sucked, to put it bluntly. And while the next summit is only a year away, I can't wait to get back there. I had so much fun, and learned a ton.
If you're looking for more summit info, you can find some at the following links:
- Dick Kusleika posted on his blog
- Damon Longworth posted his entire summit journey in a photo essay
- John Walkenbach's blog has a couple of posts:
- Andrew Engwirda just blogged his experience as well
- Colo also put up his collection of photos
From the whole event, I can say that I only have one real regret, and that is that I didn't take enough pictures. (I know that I don't have a single picture of Ron Coderre, for example, as well as a few others.) But despite that regret, I did leave with one overwhelming feeling...
I feel inspired.