Michigan 2013 – Update #1

The elevator button is on a pedestal!

There are like 10 glass elevators in a semi-circle, shiny black marble floor, strings of sparkling lights hanging from the ceiling, really cool and architectural.

But no button to press.

You feel kinda like an idiot. You walk to each elevator and stare at the bare wall thinking “Something is missing. What is it? Wait, where’s the button?”

You’re certainly not going to go ask someone how to work an elevator.

Maybe there’s a hidden camera for Candid Camera or the Ellen Show and they’re about to jump out laughing at you any minute.

Lucky for me a man who obviously knows a few things walked over to a statue and – what do you know! Pressed a button! I pretended like I was standing there waiting for my elevator but I can tell you I had my eye on him hard with my peripheral vision and it’s a good thing because he knew where the button was.  So that’s where you hid it you tricky little devils, you. In a statue.

Pretty cool once you know the secret method.

This is a BIG hotel. Not convention-center big, but tall and wide, like a roll of toilet-paper if the toilet-paper was skyscraper-sized, sliced in half, and covered with windows. And was made of hotel rooms instead of toilet paper.

14 floors again, just like Atlanta, and since it used to be a Hyatt it’s got the Hyatt atrium design with open balconies. It’s older, but it’s nice, really nice, nice clean rooms, and free wireless internet! Which is fast yay! I can send out updates without becoming homicidal!

Super duper friendly front-desk staff, doormen superbly nice and friendly, hotel staff everywhere has been really friendly, professional, instantly responsive. I’ve already made a lot of friends.

The soap is the size of my pinky fingernail and we have one bar that’s supposed to be used for both sink and shower (if you can call it a “bar” – it’s more like a “sliver.”  They give vegetable-peelers to Adoba Amenities factory workers and have them slice off peels of soap and wrap them in Adoba Hotel paper) and is infused with an overpowering fragrance of eau de Pine Sol.  I hope the dance floor won’t smell like an airplane restroom this weekend.

It takes only 15-20 minutes to get here from the airport – $33 cab fare which, if you share with friends, is way affordable. Love when the hotel is near the airport – makes life so much easier! Especially after the event, on the way home.

Front desk says there’s a Walmart 5 minutes away, a grocery store within it, and the courtesy hotel shuttle can take us.  Tomorrow morning we’ll go buy several 50-gallon drums of bottled water (we drink vast quantities of water (me) and gatorade (GB) at comps,) snacks for 4am hunger attacks, and soap some for us and a few extra bars for people we like to dance with.

It was empty here all afternoon, quiet, very different from the last two events we attended these past couple of weeks. Doug put up on facebook a cool list of pre-registered attendees as of yesterday, listed by state. How fun to see how many people coming from each different area of the country. And Canada! 70 Canadians are coming! Whoa. That’s a lot of Canadians. Canadians are like Brasilians – they’re LOUD, raucous, rowdy, supportive, a load of fun to be around. This is going to be a fun weekend!

After Canada the largest group is from Michigan – more screamers! This is Marker territory – and boy do those Marker folks make some noise! We’re expecting new routines from the Marker babies, a college crowd, exuberantly joyful and supportive of each other. Always thrilling to see these guys compete. Their faces! They look like kids on roller-coasters – scared out of their wits, shiny-eyed, red-faced, screaming with laughter.

We’re expecting a really good vibe at this event. This is our first year here in Michigan but Doug’s events are always great. There’s a lot of love and mutual support in this part of the dance community, long histories, deep friendships, and, well, a lot of love. You feel it in the air – it’s palpable.

Also, as I’ve said many times before, a LOT of funny people here, people who like to laugh first and foremost. I like that. Laughing your head off is way up there on my list of important things.

Not sure which NASDE couples will be here this weekend, either to compete or perform exhibitions. This is not a NASDE event. It’s WSDC sanctioned, though, and AANCE. So winning (or, for most people, not winning) Jack and Jill points will matter.

So how’s the weather, you ask? Gross. El mucho grosso. Hot, humid, been pouring off and on all day, some lightning, grossness. Supposed to be like this most of the weekend. So that means we’ll just have to make do with dancing all weekend instead of strolling through the enchanting flower-lined peaceful garden lanes of Detroit.

Amma goin’ down ta day-yance. (no idea what accent that’s supposed to be)

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