I guess I got out of the driveway in Columbus just before 7:30 this morning, and had a long but uneventful trip down here today, arriving at about 3:20 in the afternoon – almost to the minute of the estimated time on the GPS. Technology can be spooky sometimes.
I got my room squared away, briefly wandered around Assembly Hall – the main lodge-type building – and then had dinner at 5:30. The training sessions started at 7:00 this evening and ran until 9:00, and I’ve been just relaxing a bit since then. This evening’s sessions consisted of initial introductions, worship, and some icebreaker-type activities to help us start to know each other a bit. Tomorrow will be another full day, but I’m hoping to take at least a few pictures to share. This building is undergoing a substantial renovation throughout various portions. Based on a display in the lobby, the guestrooms are about to get a major renovation. It’s a good thing. If my room is typical of the whole place, the rooms seem to have last been fitted out in the mid-1960s. To be clear, I’m not complaining from a personal standpoint – the room is an adequate size, clean, and comfortable. I personally have no problem staying in semi-private hostels while traveling to save money, so this is more than fine for me. But it might not be to a more finicky traveler/conference attendee. This is an amazing facility and conference center, and the impending room renovations will make it really first-class, in my opinion. And the beauty of the overall campus and town is incredible, even the small part I was able to see today. Someone commented about the feel of this place earlier today, saying that as soon as you go through the stone gateway (I’ll post a picture soon), your blood pressure drops ten points. I already get that. This is a very neat place, and I’m looking forward to the setting just as much as the training.
OK, probably a good idea to get to bed now. More detail and impressions tomorrow.