Sunday, June 07, 2009

Live...From the IFT

OK, it's not really live, but it sounds better, doesn't it?

I'm in Anaheim, California, home of Disneyland. But although the convention center is next to Disneyland, I'm here for work, not for pleasure. I'm here for the Institute of Food Technologists Expo. It's an international gathering of people from universities and industry. I'm presenting some of my research in a poster format.

I flew in yesterday. Eugene and Alex dropped me off at the bus depot for the airport. All went well until Alex saw me getting on "Mommy's bus." Then he started to cry so hard I could hear him on the bus. Not exactly the best sendoff, but Eugene assures me Alex is doing OK. Plus I finished one book and one magazine on the flight, as well as writing.

I've been in California twice before, but it's always a bit of a shock to see huge palm trees everywhere. This time, I also saw a flowering purple tree (the flowers were purple, not the tree itself). I wonder what it is?

I was still on Central Time last night, so I went to bed early and woke up at 3 in the morning local time. At least I got to stay in bed another few hours. I got up right when the pool was supposed to open, but I couldn't get the gate open. Maybe tomorrow.

Anyway, after breakfast, I ran into one of my co-workers before I took the shuttle over to the convention center. I wandered around for a bit before listening to the keynote session. It started late, and then there were various speeches and awards, so the session proper didn't start until over an hour after the official start. I didn't stay for the whole thing. Instead, I met my co-workers at their booth (they're giving out cheese samples I made), then wandered around the first poster session to see what it would be like. There are lots of posters, grouped by topic, that are essentially scientific reports. The lead author stays with the poster to answer questions. I hope my session goes well on Tuesday. After the first session, I sat in on an oral session (several scientists give short talks on their research, which is grouped by theme), then attended another poster session before walking around the Expo. There are lots of exhibitors here, though my co-workers tell me this show is smaller than previous expos. Some of the booths are so big they have a second story. Exhibitors include many food companies but also some suppliers. Many booths are giving away samples. So far I've had mango sorbet, dried blueberries infused with sugar, a green tea "gel," granola samples, carrot juice, a cupcake, and a brownie. One booth is even giving away beer! Too bad I don't care for the taste.

I haven't done much in the evening other than hang out in my hotel room. I guess I'm too lazy to go around much, but after going around all day in less-than-comfortable shoes (which are still the most comfortable sandals I brought with me), I don't feel like going anywhere.

Tune in tomorrow for more news from IFT.

1 comment:

christinefonseca said...

We have a few different purple flowering trees in CA. You probably are seeing a jacaranda. Tey are common in Orange County (where you are). Try to have fun while in CA.

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