Tuesday, April 25, 2006

2006 Milblog Conference

Things I learned:
1. Bloggers are damn kewl in person and in print.
2. DCA does *NOT*, I repeat, *NOT* stand for Dulles. *sigh*
3. Missing your flight will cost you dearly.
4. Parking in DC is near about impossible. So is driving during rush hour.
5. TAKE EXTRA BATTERIES FOR YOUR CAMERA WHEN GOING ON VACATION! (which is why I'll be blegging for pictures from any and all attendees)
6. 7th NW is NOT at the opposite end of 7th SE.
7. Our military doesn't do a very good job keeping family of injured soldiers "in the loop", nor do they pay for transportation or lodging for family unless the soldier's injuries are life-threatening.
8. Many people improperly blame the in-theater public affairs offices for the lack of MSM coverage of the good stories coming out of Iraq and Afghanistan. The stories are there, for public use, but the MSM isn't picking them up, and the DOD can't force them to. As you all know, this is exactly why milblogging has become so popular, but it still suprised me how many milblog supporters think the problem is within the public affairs offices, and not with the MSM.
9. Our "young" soldiers are older than I will ever be.
10. Fran O'Brien's will be an immeasurable loss to our soldiers recovering at Walter Reed.
11. Andi is the Goddess of All Things Organized In The World. (I swear- she's incredible)
12. It would take a week or more to really explore all of the things to see just in DC alone, not to mention the outlying areas which are so full of our nation's history.
13. War memorials mean so much more to me now as an adult than they did when I was in 8th grade, the last time I was in DC.
14. There's nothing more chilling than walking around Arlington and hearing 21-gun salutes.
15. Seeing pictures of our young amputee soldiers does not compare to seeing them up-close and personal. What an inspiration; what spirit!
16. My on-line name, AFSister, is a lot more well-known than I thought!
17. DC is full of gorgeous architecture, and I cannot wait to go back to see more of the city.
18. It bothers me when I visit national treasures, like Arlington, and the cashiers who work there hardly speak English. I didn't realize how much this would bother me until it happened. It seemed disrespectful somehow, but I'm not really sure why.
19. "Celebrity" bloggers, like John, Matt, Uncle Jimbo, Capt. Z, Capt. B and Smink are incredibly approachable and wonderfully fun to be around.
20. The "Faces of the Fallen" exhibit is a must-see. Just thinking about it brings tears to my eyes.

I'll expand upon these experiences as time allows. This is a really busy time for me at work, and I'm a bit under the weather. I developed a raging case of vertigo on Sunday. I went to the doc on Monday and he's ordered an MRI to see if we can figure out what's going on. Being spinning drunk without the benefit of the alcohol is no fun at all, let me tell you. It's like a constant hangover, and every time I close my eyes or lay down, the world takes these HUGE dips, swings, spins and dives. blech.


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