For over 35 years one of the defining events of each year was the opening of the Offshore Technology Conference in Houston. During much of that time, OTC was the largest tradeshow we did each year. Pre-production would begin toward the end of each year as initial contacts with clients would begin in November and December. By March, client contacts would be coming in fast and furious. The month of April would entail late days running into very late nights. Seven day weeks would become the norm right up until the show was over and out of the centers by the second week in May.
Last year was the first year when I thought about OTC not at all. It was actually after the show was over that it even impinged on my conscious. It felt kind of strange at that time. The end of a major portion of my life. The end of a great number of yearly contacts that had become friends. Friends from all over the world. Many had already reached retirement over the years, many had left the industry with the major consolidations that had happened. Many have been missed…
This year I had a little more of a feeling of being on the edge of the planned chaos that is a major tradeshow of the size and complexity of OTC. It was through following some of my old friends at Freeman through Facebook that I at least was kept aware that OTC was happening again.
For most of this week, if I followed the local TV News, I am sure I would see multiple stories each day talking about the Conference and the impact it has on the Houston economy. I am sure with the news coming in from the Gulf off the coast of Louisiana, that a lot of the news will be talking to the experts about what happened and what can be done to prevent this kind of disaster happening again.
On another note…We woke up this morning to temperatures in the upper 50’s. And from the morning emails I see that today will be one of those topsy turvy days where that Texas Gulf Coast is actually cooler than the Blue Ridge Mountains of my dreams…Both Boone and Floyd are pushing 70 already this morning. Believe me the change is welcome after the high here hit 87 yesterday afternoon.