Whee, Orlando. The town so nice they named it once, built a shitload of theme parks and chain restaurants, slapped a smiley face on it and called it a day.
So. I just got back from the hotel's exercise room, which has hilariously, semi-dangerously outdated equipment. I was happy to see an elliptical, so I climbed on the thing and starting working, only to hear loud clunks coming from the floor. I peered down and saw huge, heavy iron gears, rusted and massive, like something you would have seen during the Inquisition, upon which this thing was balanced. The sound was so loud that I was sure I was waking up the adjacent rooms' residents, so I opted for the creaky treadmill instead. My knee is feeling better, but even so it hurt a bit to run and I didn't want to aggravate it, so I settled for the exercise bike, did about half an hour on that and exited drenched in sweat. Go, humidity.
This is the first exercise, save for some sit-ups and stretches, that I've had since being here. I'm sure I'll return in worse shape, even though I'm doing my damndest not to drink and to eat well. That being said, last night I had something called "Shrimp Cargot," my thinking that it'd be simple and not too unhealthy. Imagine my surprise (and secret delight) at seeing the dozen shrimp covered in about a pound of cheese and butter. Did I eat it? Yeah—I didn't want to be rude, after all, since this was an expensed meal.
The night before was more of the same: an overpriced seafood place where I went for a mixed grill and got about $12 worth of grilled fish and shellfish for about $40 along with some steamed vegetables (only $6 extra!). But hey, expensed, right?
A vignette from last night: We finished dinner around 9 PM, and we were both exhausted and not wanting to head out to the very drunken conference parties going on around town, so we came back to the hotel. While I didn't want to go out, I thought drinking a beer by the pool sounded nice, so I headed into the hotel bar and ordered one (a Michelob Ultra, thankyouverymuch). The hotel bar was, first, completely empty, and very, very brightly lit, like a Walmart. Second, a club remix of the new Lady Gaga song was playing very, very loudly. And third, the bartender was so flamboyant, so mincing and lispy, that I assumed he was either A) Making fun of me; or B) Trying on a character, perhaps for the Orlando Dinner Theatre Players' version of The Birdcage. After being on my feet all day, surrounding by flashing lights, this was appropriately surreal. But I drank my beer quietly out in the dark by the pool was was in bed by 10:30.
Now, back to the tradeshow floor. Good times.