Atlanta trip full of good experiences

We just spent the past seven days in Atlanta and I have been mixing business with pleasure. It has seemed like more pleasure than business.

My Associa?tion of Free Community Papers national conference happened to be in Atlanta this year and it happened to coincide with grandson Louis?s 12th birthday.

I go to conventions to learn from others in my industry but also to offer my book printing services to publications wishing to establish a book publishing division such as ours.

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We went to Benihana?s for Louie?s birthday party dinner attended by a couple of the boys? best friends. I think almost everyone in the place was there for a birthday celebration of one kind or another.

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If we think the foliage in Kansas is way ahead of schedule, it?s even further ahead in the south. In fact, everyone I talked to at the conference said they really didn?t have winter this year.

I predict there will be a shortage of allergy medicine by the time this season is all over. And winter must have been brutal for those selling snow blowers, snowmobiles and gloves.

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Our favorite place to eat is always Cameli?s Pizza. I had my usual fix of a calzone or two or three made with the same ingredients as always: sausage, green peppers, mushrooms and onions.

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We were hoping the new Cameli?s Pizza in Little 5 Points would be open by the time we got here, but it?s still a few weeks away from opening its doors. There seems to be a lot of red tape and waiting for this and that in Atlanta.

It will be a first-class place when it is finished. The downtown skyline is in view from the upstairs outdoor deck.

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I just realized I have scheduled myself for one thing or another for seven straight Satur?days beginning a couple of weeks ago through the end of May with the HHS?All School Reunion.

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The boys got a 360 X-Box for Christmas plus the Kinect. I had never seen one in action before and it?s amazing what that thing can do.

On top of the challenging games it offers auto racing with dozens of cars and tracks from around the world. Plus they have Madden 12 football, which in itself is amazing.

I tried the Fruit Ninja game and was worn out by the time it was over. It would be a great way to stay in shape and to get your heart rate way up.

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Alex and Louis look much different than the last time we saw them in November.

They both had long hair and now it is cut short. Alex has grown about 6 inches, probably since last summer, and doesn?t look like a kid any more. Louis is filling out a bit and stretching out, too. Alex will be in high school next year. How does this happen?

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Our friends, the Ranneys from Lawrence, also were in Atlanta at the same time as Dave had a conference in the same hotel as my conference. What are the odds of that? It was good to hang around with them, too.

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This stay was the most days we have stayed with the Camelis. I hope it wasn?t too long. They didn?t say anything.

If you wish to share your comments or ideas, my e-mail address is joel@hillsborofreepress.com.

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