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Borrego Springs, CA

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Quartzsite Blogger-Fest Observations

I had read on several other blogs the last couple of weeks that there was going to be a gathering of RV/travel bloggers in the desert around Quartzsite today.  After a rather emotional week for me, I decided it would be a good idea to make a trip up to Quartzsite for this gathering of like minded people and get the heck off of the refuge.  I’m sure glad I did.

I had some problems with an uncooperative GPS, so I had to just follow the written directions to the location of the gathering.  Sounded like a piece of cake; just follow US 95 to Plomosa Road and turn right.  It was about a 70 mile one way day trip for me so I left more than two hours before the meeting time of 1:30 just in case.  Good thing.  I followed US 95 and almost ended up in Blythe, CA.  I was lost.  Headed back to Quartzsite, and stopped at a LUV’s gas station to ask for directions.  It turned out that I should have taken AZ 95 in Q rather than US 95.  Oh well, I eventually got there and was only about 15 minutes late after close to 100 miles.

79 Imperial NWR 2014-157

There was quite a crowd of bloggers gathered in the middle of the desert around some yellow balloons.  Paul Weaver counted 52 of us.  I wish I had been able to get photos of everyone that attended, but that just wasn’t possible.  There were lots of folks I had met in the past, and lots of folks I had never met in person.  What a great idea this was.  It’s always nice to actually meet and put a face/faces to the blogs we read.

79 Imperial NWR 2014-158

After getting everyone to sit down in a circle for introductions (kind of like herding cats), introductions began.  We each took turns telling our names and what blogs we wrote.  I didn’t know everyone, but in this collage are Kevin and Ruth, Jerry, Nan, Betty, Marsha, and Barbara.  Sorry Marsha, I couldn’t figure out how to get your link in here.  As it was my time to get up, my glasses fell apart!  Nothing like going to a gathering where your vision isn’t 100%.

79 Imperial NWR 2014-159

I especially found it interesting to compare preconceived conceptions of people with actually meeting them in person.  In the bottom right photo above, is Gayle.  She is much taller than I expected.  Barbara also came without her dog which surprised me.  John (Heyduke) came to my rescue and fixed my glasses.  Thanks John!

_MG_1496

Sandie Dixon also surprised me by being one of the leaders of this get together.  I had the wrong impression that she was a shy and retiring IRS tax person.  Winking smile  Yah know, I kind of thought it was like what a high school reunion would be like, but without all the comparisons of how well people had done.  Everyone was their selves, and that was so refreshing.

_MG_1517

And then there was Bayfield Al, and Kelly and Pheebes.  My observation?  I wasn’t sure he would show up for this gathering with his and Kelly’s aversion to crowds, but I’m glad they did.  I love listening to people’s accents, and Al surprised me with his Canadian ‘twang’.  There will be a different voice now in my head as I read his postings, eh? 

Wish I could have spent more time chatting with him about his recent musings on solo travelers, but too little time, and too many folks to interact with.  Shortly after this photo, he asked someone if that was really my hair standing up, or did I have on one of those visors with stand up hair attached.  Thanks a lot Al!  Surprised smile  I did take my visor off to prove it really was my ‘stand at attention’ locks after a hair cut.

This gathering was the boost I needed this week, and I also didn’t get lost on the way home.  With such a great bunch of folks, it wasn’t hard to persuade them to pose for this greatest of shots…Thank you all!

_MG_1515                                                                                  THE END!!

Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy

49 comments:

  1. We had fun, didn't we....? Glad to get to meet you...... Rod

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  2. It was really great to meet you, Judy. Glad you didn't get too lost!

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  3. I think you're the first to blog about Bloggerfest! I expect that there will be 52 more posts in the next few days - none, however, will have that great 'End' photo.
    It was great to meet you - we're heading away from Quartzite for a few weeks but will be at Imperial Dam in the next month or so and will be by the refuge to see some of the great sights you've posted about. If I can remember how to set an alarm, I'll be there for a bird tour as well!!

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  4. The End picture is priceless, and only you could take such a photo! I'm so glad you went to the Bloggerfest. You really need to get away from that refuge more often. It's a bummer since you so obviously love what you do and contribute so much to people's appreciation of the refuges. No one can take your talents away from you so keep your spirits up when you think of how much you've given to the bloggers with your expertise, as well as the folks who go on your tours.

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  5. Great meeting you today Judy...so glad you came out and said hi to everyone. See you again in the next week or so hopefully!

    www.travelwithkevinandruth.com

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  6. I can't believe you got them to do a "the end" photo. Great job, Judy! I have to admit I got a little teary reading about this gathering, I would have loved to have been there, but just not enough to hang around in the desert rather than getting home to my issues here. It IS good that I have been home for the last few days, important stuff that I needed to attend to. And! that photo of you and Al is priceless. OF COURSE I saved it to my computer. Who would have thought Al had a Canadian accent! Duh.

    I have been checking in all day to see what folks might write about the bloggerfest, and sure enough, you are the first, at least the first one I have read. Such fun! I, too, have learned not to have any preconceived notions about what a blog friend might be like in person. Like you, I have been surprised. (I'll go back to my stuffy bookworm self now) :)

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  7. Wish we could have made it, but we were on the move today. Can't believe how many folks showed up. Sounds like a great gathering!

    Nina

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  8. Again, nice to meet you in person, Judy. Aileen and I beat you in distance even with no misdirection. We spent about 6 1/2 hours driving 407.5 miles return from Florence, AZ. There were a lot of bloggers who looked and sounded much different than I was expecting. Of course, the only thing I wasn't surprised about, was the total friendliness of them all. It is always nice to have a warm welcome when meeting strangers although many of you weren't really strangers as I knew a lot about all the ones I've read over the years just from comments they have made in their posts. By the way, we Canadian's don't have an accent, it is you!

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  9. What great fun that must have been. You needed a good day of fun

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  10. What a hoot, Judy. Glad that you were able to participate in Bloggerfest 2015.

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  11. What a hoot, Judy. Glad that you were able to participate in Bloggerfest 2015.

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  12. What fun and the dirt was not blowing - good deal!

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  13. I hope this becomes an annual event so Craig and I can get there. The big tent is not an attraction I want to go to, but meeting this group sure is. What would Al be without his dog

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  14. Thanks for the pictures and observations! What a good time!

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  15. glad you got home safely Judy and glad to be of service to repair your glasses (hopefully they will stay together)... see you next time...

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  16. Believe it or not, you were just like I thought you would be. Fun and witty and charming. I am so glad you were able to find us and didn't give up.

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  17. That sounds like a blast! What fun a get-together like that must have been. Of course "The End" is so appropriate!

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  18. Glad you went--it sounds as if you had a blast--and "the end" was great!

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  19. It was great to meet you and we are headed your way next week. Hope to see you.

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  20. That is "The End" photo of all time! Only you would come up with that idea... :cD

    So sad that we couldn't be there. Hopefully it happens again next year so we can get there after my eyes get fixed.

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  21. We were all so glad you could join us. What a great, fun-loving gathering we had. Oh by the way...the pretzels you left us are gone, gone, gone....hehe. Delicious.

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  22. Wow, what a great day you all had! I've met a couple of those bloggers, but sure would have been fun to meet many more of them at one time. Very cute shot of you and Al, and the End shot is priceless!!!

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  23. It was great to finally meet you, even if you are short! Funny how eager everyone was to join in the "end" photo! What a fun afternoon.

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  24. Great photos...from the few folks we have met that were there it was a perfect ending...wish we were there...hopefully it will be an annual event and we can catch you all next year!

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  25. Your presence there put the icing on the cake for me. After all these years of back & forth I finally had the chance of meeting the Bird Lady her very self. Yes to bad we didn't have more time to sit & chat about things but hopefully that is still to come. Some people I meet I instantly feel comfortable with & you my friend are one of those people............:))

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  26. how great that you got to attend the first 'blog-fest'! what fun that must have been!
    the picture of you and Al is a keeper!

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  27. I think the lost story about your trip is very interesting and cool...the 95 change from US 95 to AZ 95 in the middle of town confuses many folks, not just you!

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  28. Great post, Judy! It was so nice meeting you, finally. I feel like I know you. Wasn't it a fun gathering? So many people. I wish I could do it over again to meet more people and take better pictures. And of course, I would bring Katie. I never even thought about bringing her. Hope to see you again, sooner rather than later. :)

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  29. Good post. Such support you all have. I should become a blogger.

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  30. Great Blog-Fest and just love your photos, especially the last one. Yuma and I wanted to meet you but time flew by so fast.

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  31. awww. . .what a wonderful post this is. So happy you got out and about and did something JUST FOR FUN! Yaaa for you. . .

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  32. What a great event, wish I was there. Great "the end" photoi.

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  33. It was so nice to finally meet you. I wish I could have posed for the last shot but I could get that cart to move faster. Oh well, my yellow balloon added to the shot.

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  34. Glad you had a great time! Wish we could have been there:(

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  35. Good for you getting away! Love that end shot...:)

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  36. Best 'The End' photo ever. Wish we could have been there.

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  37. Wowzers -- what an end to this tale! Fun times. Good for the spirit. Glad you could get there, as in "go," not get there, as in find the site. :- )

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  38. Hey Judy, love that T-shirt. would be nice to meet up again and have a longer visit....plus see Emma !

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  39. How cool... we had only barely heard buzz about this. Had we known, we might have stuck around Quartzsite a little longer to stop by and meet everyone. Looks like it was a great event!

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  40. We are thinking of heading west next year instead of back to the Rio Grande Valley. If so, hope they do it again.

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  41. So funny you got your "the end" shot! I know what you mean about the voice, when I met Sharon her voice was such a shock with that southern accent but now I'm used to it and it's the voice I hear in my head when I read her blog or texts now. Your accent wouldn't be a shock I would imagine as if I'm not mistaken we're both somewhat "from" the northern Midwest. Are you from Illinois or Minnesota, I can't remember.

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  42. So glad you got away for a bit and with so many fun folks! Glad you shared and it will be fun to go visit some of the blogs you linked to as well. Oh and just got a folding rocker like you had gotten - for my Mom when we take the trailer! Thanks for the review in your Hodge Podge!

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  43. Well THAT was fun! I've been lucky enough to meet in person about 3 or 4 of the people behind blogs that I read, mostly when we're traveling and end up in their part of the country. Someday I hope to meet YOU!

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  44. lovely pictures, and that is very nice people had great fun..dubai desert safari

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  45. Awesome bird pics. And that last picture is pretty good, also. Glad to have been a part of it.

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  46. Nice post.Thank you for sharing this in Your blog.

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