January 20, 2008

Science Blogging Conference: Friday

Wow. I'm back from Raleigh, NC where I spent the day yesterday at the 2nd North Carolina Science Blogging Conference. It was an absolutely fabulous conference and all congratulations to the organizers for putting on a great party. The conference hotel was the Radisson Research Triangle Park, which was a great hotel, if a little oddly laid out. The bar was a cozy setting for late night Friday and Saturday gatherings.

The first omens for the conference were also very positive. The cab ride to the airport on Friday afternoon was one of the fastest ever; not only that, but I cleared check-in, customs and security in a record 40 minutes. At customs there were only six people in front of me in line! With tons of time, I enjoyed a relaxing read of the New York Times. I rarely complain about airport wait times as they are still among the few times where I experience some enforced relaxation. The flight was also without incident; I did end up waiting 40+ minutes for the hotel shuttle at RDU, but that was no big deal as I was in no hurry.

When I got the hotel, I just hung out for a few hours while waiting for the dinner gathering that evening. At 6.30, I went to the lobby and who was there but Christina! As it happens, she'd rented a car for her stay so she ended up driving a few of us to the restaurant. After some navigational adventures, we finally made it to the restaurant, the Town Hall Grill. The food was very fine. I had a salad appetizer, pan seared mahi mahi and a banana pudding desert. The fish was fabulous: subtle and buttery and perfectly done. It was served with some kind of deep fried grits pyramid thing which was also very good, contrasting a crispy outside with a soft inside.

After the dinner, we all headed back to the hotel, this time with no navigational adventures. I ended up at the bar until about 1 am chatting and schmoozing with various bloggers. A great evening!

Below are some pics from Friday. I'll put them into flickr when I get a chance.

Online participation page for links to session videos.

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