Thursday, April 15, 2010
One Week Since the Abilities Expo by Angela
April 15, 2010--1 week since the Abilities Expo.
I am feeling rested and recovered somewhat. Displaying the boat there and allowing people to use the rowing machines was lots of fun, well as much fun as a rowing machine can be. I transferred over on to the rowing machine and demonstrated it hundreds of times, got into and out of the Rowoflife boat several times for interviews and video and spoke with thousands of people about rowing and its physical and mental benefits for everyone.
The rules were that the boat was just to be displayed and no one was to go onboard but I really just couldn’t help it. Some of the kids were just so darn cute and they couldn’t see in without getting up over the gunnels. For those who are not familiar with the Expo it is similar to a trade show.
It takes place at a convention center and is attended by thousands of people. It is called the Abilities Expo and does have to do with products and services for people with disabilities or caregivers and health care provider of people with disabilities. I have a difficult time using the word disabled mostly because my definition of dis abled is anyone who believes they can’t do something. There were not many disabled people there only people looking for the latest and greatest technology and advances to enable them rather than disable them.
Working the expo is as rewarding and energizing, as it is tiring. Every person there has and shares a positive energy. Everyone there has an amazing story. I wished I had more time to here some of the others and see some of the exhibits. I did not stray far from my exhibit and missed a lot. I have been going through the show directory and buyers guide to catch up but there is nothing like seeing something in 3 d or watching it being demonstrated. We took the boat in on Wednesday had Thursday to prepare handouts and Friday was the beginning. It was especially hectic Friday morning since KTLA Gail Anderson came out and did a piece on the Expo. She rowed in sync with me on the rowing machine next to me and interviewed me while we were rowing. She was definitely winded before me but I still said "bringland" instead of England. That may have been a Freudian slip. Bring land get it? Quite a few people came to the expo saying they had seen it on the news and came down.
We came in so early with the boat and it took that much time to set up but by 7 pm after the expo closed at 4, we were outta there with the boat and everyone else was outta there too. It moved and tore down so quickly. We made it home, boat in tow, safe and sound. She is now back in her cozy little niche in my driveway. I spent a day getting the ergs back to the rowing center and unpacking the boat. I had taken a bit of personal kit to show the kids what you take on an ocean crossing, how you rehydrate your food, how to use GPS and of course, showed them the bucket.
It was a fantastic opportunity for me to demonstrate the sport of rowing and represent ability and achievement. I Thank and appreciate the organizers of the event for sponsoring my exhibit.