Topaz News

I flew into Denver on Saturday, and already have noticed some interesting things. Happy reading!

Pilot Chattiness - Is this a good thing or a bad thing? During the summer we have lots of kids on the flights, so maybe it is a good thing. This pilot told us what it cost to fill the tank (over $12,000), how many miles per gallon, and how much faster it is to fly than to drive (in terms of hours). Then there were the numerous fly-by announcements.

United Airlines is a changing! – On this flight I saw many little things that indicate maybe they are changing (for the good). In fact, I witnessed the pilot popping out of his cabin right before departing the gate with a kid's headset and iPod. Upon handing it to the flight attendant, he said it was in the waiting area and the ground crew handed it up through the pilot's window to head back to a happy owner. It's the little things.

Monaco Denver - Have I told you I love Kimpton Hotels? I am always greeted with a level of enthusiasm and happiness I find nowhere else. The hotels are usually in old buildings that have been upgraded but have character. Their robes are the coolest on the planet. Oh and this trip I got a stuffed animal to sleep with since I am alone in this room a lot!

Hotel Front Desk Informal Survey - I went to a couple of hotels, including mine, and inquired about their guests and why they were in town. All were willing to tell me many were attending GBTA, but they all mentioned many were in town for the same conference but did not register under the GBTA room blocks. Interesting.

Goorin Hat Company - I caved yet again. Went to my favorite hat company and bought a hat to protect my head from the mile closer sun.

Invitations to the Partyfest - I thought it was odd that I kept getting invitations to the parties - but they were all the big ones. I was excluded from most of the dinners. I guess I am a good party guest but not a good dinner guest. That's fine. I have friends to have dinner with. Plus the food is better. Now I will never get invited. Damn I may never get invited to the parties.

Travel Buyers Not Attending - There are many of my travel buyer friends who are not attending. Yet, they continue to receive emails from suppliers asking for meetings and looking forward to seeing them in Denver. I wonder how accurate the attendee list is. Then, over the last few weeks, travel buyers were being invited to attend for free. Did some of you pay to attend? How does that make you feel?

Mile High City or All the Residents are High City - There are a lot of stoners in this town. They seem completely out of it. I smell pot all over the place. Now, that said, they all seem nice. I imagine it's like Woodstock might have been, had I been old enough then to attend.

Me and my Backpack - I think I am getting a lot of looks because of my backpack - there is a lot of worry in the eyes of Americans and others all over the world. We are scared about what might happen next. I yelled at a cop to "stay strong." I hope this all ends soon but it may just be the new normal which is not fun at all. Scary times.

Meals - Go to Nickel for a burger (or probably anything else), Panzano for Italian, and try Ink coffee.

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