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Alanon International: Thursday Night.
running
sunnywiz

(xposted to personal + 1 community)
I'm at the hotel after my first evening at the Alanon International Convention in Pittsburgh.  (David Lawrence Convention Center) I want to tell all, but I know that I can't.. so, i'll share some.

Its held in two different venues - the convention center has all the meetings, but the BIG meetings (tomorrow and Sunday) are in a place called Mellon Arena. 

When I walked in the door, and before I could even ask anything, a lady said welcome! and gave me a big hug.  I asked here where the registration was, she pointed up the stairs, said "You're in the right place".    It Ain't Alanon till You've Been Hugged.    Or something like that. :)

Once I got signed in and got my badge and stuff.. my first stop was to find some way to volunteer.  I signed up to be a greeter for the big meeting tomorrow (greet from 5pm to 6pm), will be hooking up with a lady named Pat.   Then, I sat down and started going through the schedule - I'll post some pics in here when I get internet again:
0703082204.jpg
(first page only - shows how the meetings are laid out)

I called my sponsor!  He's camped out at a campground like 40 miles north of here.   We talked about how we might meet up.. current conservative plan is the Men's meeting, but if not that, then we'll cellphone after.

I spotted an Indian couple.. decked out in Indian clothes.  I kinda said hello to them, but not in a meaningful way.. (they come back in later)

I spotted the table with the new literature.  I bought a copy of the new book (shiny bling and all).   Here it is:
0703082206.jpg
(inside front cover)

Then I saw the Indian guy sitting by himself at a table in the hospitality Hall.  Hall, btw, == HUUUUGE.   Like, takes minutes to walk from one end to the other.   I went over, and I sat with him, and all kinds of stuff started pouring out.. me and Mom, Mom and wife, cross cultural marriage, my brother, my relationship with my sponsor, etc.   It was wonderful, this older Indian guy listening with RECOVERY EARS (woohoo!)  and sharing some of the stuff he had seen.   It was just what I needed, having spent some time with my mother before going to the convention.  (Good stuff, but needed airing).   When it felt right to part, I asked if he'd like a hug, and he about jumped out of his chair.. and it was a good hug.  I think we both about cried, it had been a good meaningful connection.    Another thing - his name is Raju A.  My older brother's nickname is Raju.   Yep.  It moved me.

Then, as I walked over to the love gift table to volunteer, I passed by a bunch of ladies who looked like service work ladies.. (and I was right!  1 Past Delegate, 1 Area Chair, a GR, a DR, etc).. said hello.. which lead to "where are you from!" (they're from Michigan) .. which lead to hugs... which lead to joining their group for dinner. and then the question of dinner came up, and I joined them.    We went to some pub place, and our waiter turned out to be in AA, and this lady (Peggy?)'s sponsor ended up two tables away, and it was great fun.    Oh yah, they're all like older than my mom, which is why it felt ok to be with them. 

I did volunteer for love gift work.. tomorrow at 2-3 (or might be Saturday. i have it written down)

While at dinner. talked about a bunch of stuff.. we compared meeting formats.. I told them my service work story..  and how I'm getting back in the fold again.. when we were parting, the oldest lady there (leader of the pack?) hugged me and told me to stick with the service work, that's where the best recovery is.     It was good affirmation. 

Now i'm back at the hotel.  Its definitely.. a fake, illusion of home.  There are problems with excessive condensation as the granite warms up from 50 to 64.. the fridge doesn't fit.. its okay.  It doesn't need to be fancy.  However, internet to the room is broken, which is why i'm going to walk downstairs with the laptop and continue this post (with pictures) from downstairs.  After I take them.  Which I will do now.

Which I just did. :)

And My Peeps from Iowa just walked in!  (Sorry Justbeal, no Dilly, she's at another hotel)


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I'm jealous. I've never been to an International convention in all of my 14 years. lol One day! I'm struggling to find meetings around here that I feel "safe" at again. *sighs* At least I still have my Alateens. lol

honey.. just go. Sign up and go. You'll be very very safe there.

Oh I know I will. I don't have security issues with conventions. heh It's just local meetings. Lame I know. I need to let go of the resentments, but every time I do they start stuff again. IT's weird.

Hey, want me to ask around here if I find somebody from Michigan.. actually I met a bunch already ... get some numbers for you?

I know plenty of meetings actually. I've worked at the state level. T hank you for the offer though! :)

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