Here's what I learned about the outdoor industry this week:
- There are a lot of fit, attractive people who work in the outdoor industry. Oh. My. There are a lots of "regular" people there too, but it only takes a few dozen hundred drop-dead gorgeous men out of 10,000 to appreciate what good, clean air and fitness can accomplish to brighten up a long week of standing around selling product.
- I should probably get in better shape. I do admit to feeling a teensy bit more out of shape than I felt last week, due to seeing all the beautiful people, but not enough to feel ashamed or down on myself, or anything. Just enough to maybe start doing a sit up now and then.
- These people seem happy and calm compared to other industry trade shows I've been to, where there seems to be quite a lot of hardcore selling and competitiveness. Most of these people are glad to see old friends and talk about their latest ski run or marathon, or whatever. All that exercise can cause a bit of Zen/Yoga peace and such, I suppose.
- Beer starts flowing at 4:00 p.m. every day. Free beer. I mean, you walk around and all the cute girls at Polar Tech and other places start handing you beer. They hand it to you as you walk by.
- I love Polartec. It is my favorite booth. They give you super cool schwag prizes, like Polartec fleece scarves, and they are happy to show you pictures of their dogs, if you ask. The prize givers, Katie and Kate, have super cute dogs, I tell you!
- I also love New Balance. I've always liked New Balance shoes. My mom gave me some new New Balance shoes for my high school graduation, to take off to college so I could keep up with my "jogging" (it was jogging back in the 80's, not running) so I've always appreciated them. But at OR, New Balance served free fresh waffles and fresh fruit and whipped cream every morning for breakfast. One girl has a crazy huge black lab, and one guy has a big lovable mutt (I saw pictures.) I love those people.
Dogs, sporting goods, wild nights out with our Korean friends who "forced" us to drink Sohji, (which is like Japanese Saki, but smoother, so you can drink more) meeting all kinds of lovely, fit people who were thrilled to meet the Ruff Wear crew, since they love our product...it was a pretty good week.
But I'm glad to get back to the original "OR"-Oregon, to see my own dog and eat the most delicious French Toast that my husband makes on Sunday mornings. And to "think" about running in my new shoes, as soon as it stops snowing.
It's good to be home.