On the road... I'm on the road...
by, 11/01/2008 at 10:18 AM (4539 Views)
I'm posting this from the train to Santa Barbara. I'll be doing a pre-release there in about 3 hours. Its rainy, but the sea and mountains are beautiful still.
One of the things I enjoy about Pokémon is the travel. I used to patrol the California coast from San Diego to Marin in my late teens and twenties. Since getting involved with Organized Play I've done that again over the last 8 years... traveling to tournaments to play and to judge.
There have been a lot of good times in the van, going up and down the state, and even to Arizona & Nevada. Driving through the mountains in the snow to CCs & PREs. Showing up early in Long Beach at the Queen Mary STS only to find ourselves at the end of a very long line. Sprinting into the San Diego convention center to make the SDSC on time after finally finding parking.
With my children's friends growing up and going off to college, those times of flying down the interstate at 70MPH while the boys are rocking and bouncing the van with their horseplay, trying to break the boredom of the long drive (and my sanity), have gotten fewer. And then, there's the price of gas. Out west here, states are far apart. Its 1 state tournament for me, though the PTOs try to make sure neighboring states are on different weekends.
Of course, as a judge at Regionals, Nationals and Worlds, there have been other travel opportunities. Our family, all five, went together to the Disney parks, tacking a family vacatio onto the World Championships in Orlando last year.
I've had a lot of fun meeting people and learning their stories. I heard and shared some amazing experiences. A mom and her children with a Marine husband - she saw his Humvee hit an IED in Iraq (he was KO'd, but recovered in a couple days). I've spent the night in the ER while a staffer got treated for a crushing migraine. Playing cards with the PCL in the middle of the night in 2003 & discovering that Expedition Gengar should have been a lot more amazing. Hearing the story of the legendary "Impostor Dealer Billy" -- a homeless guy who alternately tried to impress and wheedle to get money out of the kids across at a fast food during a break at one event.
Well, this is not too coherent, partly because I keep getting distracted by the scenery. I'll try to post some pictures later, if I can get some that aren't blurry.
How 'bout you? Had a fun or notable experience travelling for Pokemon events?