Las Vegas seems to have a permanent place in the world. It's a place that changes constantly, and yet there is a sense of things having always been they way they are at that moment. Is it any wonder that most natural disaster movies feature at least one scene featuring the destruction of this place? If it can kill Las Vegas, it must be REALLY bad!
Today was a busy day. In a way, it was the day I was looking forward to and dreading all at the same time. The technical stuff came out. NRT (non-real time). NGIS (next generation interconnect system). I somehow wound up in one session that was really engineering and way over my head - but sometimes just having the exposure sinks in a little and the next time you hear it, it makes a little more sense. There was one session though, that helped me tremendously.
See, five years ago was my last year on the Traffic Advisory Committee. And I knew this stuff backwards and forwards. After listening to the previous sessions, I realized that what I used to know had evolved some - that a few things had changed, but I hadn't figured out just what and how much. So I raised my hand and asked a surprisingly prescient question. Is there such a thing as NRT 101? Something that would explain how, now that it's becoming a reality, how did they see the delivery from beginning to end working? There was some laughter - I have a knack for asking the seemingly dumb question that is also the same one everyone wants the answer to and is afraid to ask. And I found out that they had indeed been working on a document with that exact title! It should be available next month. And I also found out that while certain aspects of the original plans have changed, the overall system remains pretty much the same - so I'm not as far out of the loop as I thought. What a relief! I have an appointment tomorrow morning to see a demonstration and get a more indepth explanation of what we're going to be dealing with at my particular station, which will set my mind further at ease, I'm sure.
Over the course of the day, I talked to a lot of people, learned a few things, explained a few things and listened a lot. I met lots of new people and reconnected with a bunch of old acquaintences, and during the reception at the end of the day, resolved some pressing questions I'd come to find answers to. A very satisfying day, all in all.
Tiring though. I stopped at the Asian Fresh place and got over-priced stir-fry for dinner, which I carried to my room and ate. No time for slots. Too sleepy to go back down. I think I will get up early tomorrow and play a few rounds before my final day of meetings begins.
At the end of tomorrow's sessions there's a big party scheduled. It's to be held outside next to the pool. I asked if there was a plan b - today's weather has been odd. The wind has been whipping the palm trees back and forth all day and sand has hazed the horizon for two days. It really does look a bit like the build up to the end of the world. But this is Vegas. I'm betting that tomorrow night, it will be clear, calm and beautiful out. If I win, the house wins too!