Two Orchids and a City

Monday, January 19th, 2015

Whew! Are we ever tired…. But - a good kind of tired.  We just got back from the Home & Gift Show in Dallas at the World Trade Center.  It was a great show for us and we made many new friends and made some wonderful contacts.  I just can't wait to talk all about that - but first, I have to talk about the woes of packing up our booth so that I can begin laughing about it…  Right now I'm still in my sleep deprived funk and need to make light of all of this before I am found sitting in a dark corner somewhere sucking my thumb.  

Setting up our display went quite flawlessly, so I guess it was only natural that the closing down part wouldn't go quite as smoothly…  Because we are not Mr. Proctor & Ms. Gamble and don't have their budget for trade shows, we decided we could save money by packing up our booth and loading it up our ourselves.  Well, that was when things went from "what a great show, I am so glad we came" to "this show bites the big one and I can't wait to get out of Dallas!".  Well - maybe not that bad, but you can only imagine how tired we were from talking and smiling and standing for four straight days, so naturally we were a bit grumpy while trying to navigate around all the union workers that were paid to break down booths and we were these little cheap, non-paying peons in their way of getting done what they needed to do so they could call it a day.  So because we were in the category of "self-loading", which really should be called "self-loathing" since that is how it felt, we were also summoned to a different freight elevator than the gigantic mother load of freight elevators that all the union workers got to use.  In fact, I do not even know why they called this elevator a freight elevator because it was not much bigger than the elevator at our hotel.  

Anyway, I was able to avoid the not-really-a-freight-elevator the first two loads because my job was to stay in the booth and do the packing part.  That of course was fine with me because I DO NOT like elevators.  I have no idea where this claustrophobia of mine came from that I have had my whole life; well my mother has her theory, in fact I blogged about it once here in case you are interested.  So anyway, I made myself look very busy packing and continued to invent all kinds of jobs to do for myself on the floor to avoid any unnecessary elevator trips.  But - the time finally came… It was the final load and the union guys were yelling at us to get off the floor because it was closing.  So I followed Jack who was pushing the dolly full of stuff and I had bags hanging from both arms and carrying two orchids.  After a good 10-mintute wait the doors to the elevator opened.  I don't know how Jack got the tall hutch wedged in there, but he did.  Behind him came another couple with a big dolly all loaded up and then a handful of other people with their arms over-flowing while cramming themselves inside.  I am still standing there waiting my turn to enter and from the back of elevator I could see Jack waving me in and saying, "come on, you can fit."  I'm serious y'all, this thing was stuffed fuller than a can of biscuits and there was just no way.  Just NO way I could do it.  Jack could tell by the look on my face that it wasn't going to happen.  I just shouted back at him, I will figure it out!  And with that the doors closed and there I stood with what felt like 50 pounds of stuff crammed in bags dangling from my arms and shoulders and balancing two orchids.  

(Now the orchid story in itself is a whole other story…   Jack went through all kinds of trouble to get those orchids and there was no way I was leaving them behind!) 

So with that, I picked myself up and decided I was going to use the main entrance and to heck with riding in the not-really-a-freight-elevator thing.  The problem is that the Dallas Market has a policy and doesn't want vendors using the main entrance if they are loaded down with stuff because you know - it just looks tacky.  But - the really cool thing about the World Trade Center in Dallas is that is has escalators on every single floor.  Now it can take a while to take escalators for twelve stories, especially when you are loaded up, arm-to-arm, but hey - I felt I was an exception because after all, fear of elevators should be on the official list of disabilities in my opinion.  So y'all know I just got myself together, took a deep breath, threw my hair back and strutted right to those escalators as if I owned the place.  There wasn't anyone that was going to tell me I had to use that stinking elevator at the back of the building! And STRUT I did! So much so that by the time I completed the twelve flights of escalators and navigated through 5 acres of lobby I heard a POP! And right then and there the meniscus blew….  I knew it was about to happen, as I have been having problems with my left knee.  My right knee was reconstructed about 6 years ago, so I knew exactly what was happening.  But- being the chick that I am, I dragged my left leg behind me, still hanging on to those orchids and smiling and trying to look all official and cute and stuff; I limped all the way around another 6 acres of World Trade Center until I got to the very back of this enormous building and to the loading dock where Jack was still loading the truck.  

All was finally right in the world, as I was out of the building and we were now on our way HOME! Well, sort of…  We drove all the way through downtown Dallas and were heading south when somewhere between Dallas and Waco Jack suddenly realized he had left his laptop in the hotel.  So we turned around and headed back to the Big D.  I thought to myself, there is absolutely nothing more that could go wrong.  Well….. 

We were finally an hour from home, I'm driving (because I am woman hear me roar), and I get pulled over by the Hays County Sheriff.  Oh Lord help my soul! And with that our luck changed right then and there.  Do you know why? Because that nice deputy didn't give me a ticket.  I'm pretty sure it had something to do with what Jack said to him: "We are so sorry for the inconvenience, but we have been driving for hours and are really tired and if my wife gets a ticket I am really the one that will pay the price because she is going to complain about that for the whole next hour and I have to listen to it."  I guess he completely understood because he just smiled and said, "Ma'am, you slow it down and get home safely."  His mama taught him right.  

As we say in Texas:  When mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy! 

So with all that said, THANK YOU for hearing my crazy story, THANK YOU nice deputy, and more importantly, THANK YOU to all our new customers - we look forward to partnering with you.  And to our old customers that stopped by to say hello, THANK YOU for sticking with us all these years.  We are looking forward to many more great years and many more great products to come!  






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