Let me just start this off by saying I *hate* to be away from Bimmer for more than a day or so. Heading to Orlando with work for 5 days was not my idea of a good time. Orlando should be a family destination - full of overspending on Mickey Mouse paraphernalia. (Don't worry - we're already discussing when the best age would be to take Bimmer to Disney!) I was originally scheduled to spend the first day at Epcot with my co-workers, drinking around the world. Well, life sometimes throws us opportunities to make the best of a situation, so instead of wasting $100+ being stuck watching other people get drunk, I rented a car and hit the road to the coast to visit my mom. I hadn't seen her since Bimmer was about a month old!
Getting there required the wearing of some big-girl panties. I had to get up at 4am, pack only a carry-on, survive flying through a lightning storm, and then literally sprinting through the Atlanta airport. Oh, from like gate D35 to T4 in a matter of minutes. They closed the boarding door right behind us! After all of that, I was content to spend the afternoon helping my mom and catching up with her. Splurging on a room at the swanky Hyatt Regency Sarasota, right on the water, was vital. I'm so excited to go back later this year with Puff and Bimmer! Outside of a hiccup with me trying to find dinner downtown but coming face-to-face with a biker rally that had the streets closed, it was a good first day. Followed by 12 hours of glorious sleep!
The rest of the trip was your typical conference nonsense... mind-numbing sessions, mediocre banquet food, and awkward dancing with your coworkers. We did, however, win team of the year for our entire company, so that was pretty amazing. That helped us forget our group dinner at Planet Hollywood. Yes, apparently they do still exist. And, in case you're wondering, the food is still as crappy as I remember from childhood.
A few of us tried to bring some light to our situation and came up with a game of who could Snapchat themselves on this big ottoman in the lobby bathroom of our hotel. I ended up getting 4, which I think was tied for first place. Hey, sometimes you gotta entertain yourself when there's nothing much better to do!
Coming home, the plane out of Atlanta was downgraded, so 6 of us didn't have seats. Thankfully, others volunteered to get off in favor of a $400 flight voucher. I was about to just take it myself had I needed to fly anywhere else later this year! And after all that drama, when I got to my car in the airport, my tire was going flat! Thankfully, I was able to make it home in one piece and send Puff out to fill it up for me. But seeing Bimmer's face light up when she saw me get out of the car was priceless. I just love that kid so much. I swear she grew up on me while I was gone. And she loved the Minnie Mouse t-shirt I brought her. (This thrifty mom bought it at a Target while I was there, since they had a kickass Disney section, and it was only $7 versus I'm sure twice that at the Disney store in the airport!) She kept yelling "Minnie!" and wanted to wear it all night. We let her wear it to school the next day to show off to her friends.
For as much as I love to travel, it was good to get home. Probably because I missed Puff and Bimmer so much. Next time, I'll just have to take them with me!