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Summer of Travel - Las Vegas

After a ten month separation, suddenly, there it spread below me. The wild, wild west in all its inhospitable, desiccating, jagged, Martian beauty. My favorite part of America.

Except I wasn't going there exactly. I was going to the neon and excess of Las Vegas...and to real people! After two years and two months, I was going to meet dozens and dozens of my coworkers at our first in-person user conference since 2019. The energy, the hugs, the conversations - all amazing. Four days in the MGM Grand with 5,000 Splunkers, customers, and partners. I worked the pavilion floor, evangelizing my customer success knowledge base and running up to person after person I had known only from a small Zoom box and saying "You're real! You're a human!" I loved the connection.

And then I did get out into the mountains. I had three days in between conferences and an old acquaintance flying in from Santa Fe to enjoy the dust and desert with. It turns out that 50 degree air can be found very close by on a 110 degree Vegas day and that a Mitsubishi Outlander is too small for two people to sleep in, especially when one is over six feet tall. I also learned that after five months at sea level, I am woefully unfit for elevation. I maxed out around 10,500 feet and it was a struggle to even get there. My booty needs to put some serious work in before 14er season rolls around in August. Still, we logged around 23 miles and 6,700 feet gain over the three days, which isn't terrible.

Back in Vegas, this time at a glitzy and overly formal suite in the Venetian for three days of internal training and networking with customer-facing Splunkers, I managed to sneak in a little fun with a comedy show and Meow Wolf Las Vegas - Omega Mart. I didn't try to solve the Dramcorp mystery but simply enjoyed the lights, music, design, and aspirational carrots.

And of course, I met even more coworkers. Splunk does a great job with the virtual work experience, and obviously I love being a digital nomad, but there's no substitute for people in flesh. Cheers to many more opportunities to meet in person!