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Today I had the honor and privilege of working as a volunteer at the Charlotte Convention Center on the first day of the DNC.  It was truly an unforgettable experience.  I invite you to take a break from the MSM's sour grapes and enjoy up close and personal some of the awesomeness that happened here today.  We are FIRED UP!

Charlotte Convention Center, 9/3/12

My shift was scheduled from 12-4.  Hubby got me pretty close, but traffic reached a standstill a few blocks before the Convention Center.  I decided to bail and walk the rest of the way.  My foot barely hit the sidewalk before a lady came up to me, asking for directions to an event.  

When the sky looks like this at noon, you know it's fixin' to storm.
Only then did I realize, hey girl -- you're in uniform and people will approach you!  Did they ever!  I checked in half an hour late, apologizing while explaining that I'd already had my "orientation" on the way in.  They were very flexible, and after a brief wait I was stationed at the top of the main stairway.  My "official" duty was to have a wheelchair available for any attendee requesting assistance.  But it was a little bit of everything.  LOTS of directions!

I assisted a delightful lady from her caucus meeting to the food court, and found another volunteer to wait in line for her as I escorted a delegate to the buses.  The Buses consist of city blocks of yes, buses, lined up one after another by number and route.  It's a long walk on a steamy Southern afternoon.  My delegate got to the right place, and I was very happy to be back inside.  Major, major kudos to the many workers and volunteers who braved the heat in heavy gear today!

So far I've been short on pictures, because the first batch was taken on my cell phone which apparently decided not to save them.  @#&$*#@&, I even had one of Debbie Wasserman-Schutz >:(

After my shift, we headed to CarolinaFest as I madly texted blue armadillo and eeff trying to connect.  

Through the power of texting and umbrella-waving, blue armadillo and I finally found each other!  Moments later, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, and NC Lieutenant Governor and Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate Walter Dalton came onstage to introduce James Taylor.  
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, 9/3/12
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick introducing Walter Dalton, Democratic Candidate for NC Governor 9/3/12
Walter Dalton, 9/3/12
By now you've met Red Bandana Guy.  He was right in front of me, and his head was everywhere all the time.  It almost seemed as if he was trying to passive-aggressively thwart my photography.  The above are my best efforts.
It started raining early in the show, but really, when do you get thisclose to James Taylor for free?  Somehow I've never seen him live before, and he was amazing, Obama shirt and all!  The crowd went wild.
I'm not one of those people who bails on rain delays.  I once got a seat behind home plate at Fenway for five innings, just by waiting out the rain and looking purposeful.  I had an umbrella.  If the rain let up, we were golden!

Except it didn't.  We had the best "seats" in the house until it started raining sideways and the announcement came that the concert would be suspended.  Everyone was advised to seek shelter.  By then every marginally covered nook and cranny was packed.  I'd lost track of blue armadillo and was struggling to keep my phone dry.  We were already soaked to the skin and  decided to just keep walking to the train station.  So did a whole bunch of other people.  

It's again past my bedtime, so I'll leave you with this:  If there is an "enthusiasm gap," I saw zero evidence of it today!  No system this complex can be completely free of bugs.  We're taking it in stride.  

I've never been so proud to call Charlotte home.  I literally lost count of the people who praised our friendliness and hospitality.  A few people approached me not to ask for help, but just to thank me for my service.  

I'm kicking myself for not taking PTO tomorrow and Wednesday.  But I'm looking at a loooong shift Thursday.  Off to rest and hydrate!

3:47 AM PT: Wow, Rec List!  What a way to start an amazing week, thanks all!

I'm headed off to work but will try to check back through the day.

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