I will be going to RootsTech 2017 in a little over one week for the first time in my life. I have never done this before, though we used to live in Utah. But we had the excuse of being poor students.
In 2009 I was working as a teacher at BYU StarTalk Arabic, the second year they had it. We had to share one of the buildings on campus with a genealogy conference, and I remember laughing to myself and saying under my breath, "This is not a convention of genealogists, but of old fat people." I actually got in really big trouble for saying that, because one of the administrators of the program heard me. I'll never forget her response. She got really defensive, "These people are some of the nicest people I have ever met! How dare you talk about them like that!"
I remember thinking, "I don't doubt that! I never thought they weren't nice!" By this time, I was pretty well steeped into my own genealogy (I started this addictive hobby when I was a junior at BYU, in 2007).
I guess that was my dark Czech humor coming out, though.
Anyway, I just started to realize what RootsTech is: COMIC CON for genealogists.
Which means it's going to be like, swag central.
I'm going to meet all the random bloggers and writers, and frankly, I'm a little bit intimidated about it right now because normally I just have like one, two, maximum three people together with me in my private, magical little genealogy world.
But this is like, thousands…the conference center seats 22k.
I got invited to a "genealogy bloggers going to rootstech 2017" Facebook group and apparently people there have been getting ready for this event for months and months. There's like… Giveaways and after parties and all kinds of other ridiculous insane things that make me laugh as a first reaction, and give me butterflies in my stomach as a second reaction.
For example, I laughed out loud when I saw this. A genealogy “after-party”?!
I guess to be honest, I feel slightly scared and nervous. Like a tiny fish in a big pond.
But, I have zero expectations for what I hope to get out of this, besides a fun and interesting trip. So it will be successful no matter if the only interesting thing is a visit to the crowded FHL. Though I'm sure that will not be the only interesting thing.
Not by a long shot...
Actually, I've started making a list of the things I would like to have changed by some of the big tech companies regarding Czech genealogy. More about that later - but if you have any ideas, please, please, please let me know! I might actually have a chance to tell the bigger fish how they could make our ocean a lot better.