Monday, May 21, 2007

A fun weekend in Long Beach

My blog postings were sparse over the weekend because we went to Long Beach over the weekend. We got there after noon on Friday and visited the Aquarium of the Sea in downtown Long Beach. This is a wonderful aquarium. We went to Seal Beach for dinner and walked along the main street afterwards. On Saturday, we headed for Ports of Call in San Pedro. This is a shopping area along the port waterway. There was a "Woody" car show in the parking lot with music and booths nearby. We took a free hour-long LA harbor cruise - it was amazing to see a working port in action - several container ships were being loaded. We ate dinner on Alamitos Bay and enjoyed seeing the teens in their prom outfits.

On Sunday, we had an early lunch and showed up at the Questing Heirs Genealogical Society meeting at about 12:30 PM. The program started at 1:15 PM, with host John McCoy interviewing me on:

What is a "chula"?
How did CVGS put the cemetery CD together?
How did you get started in genealogy?
What are the uses of a blog?

John had emailed a list of questions to me so I had prepared some comments on each question, including the ones he didn't ask because we ran out of time. I will post some of my answers during the week. During the interview, I had a saved copy of my blog on the screen and was able to show several features of a genealogy blog to the audience.

During the snack break between programs, I put my "Genealogy is Fun(ny)" PowerPoint presentation on as a slide show, and some people sat there laughing, including my wife (who hadn't seen it before).

After a short business society meeting, I was introduced to speak on "Finding Your Elusive Ancestors in the Census Haystack." I had switched this talk to a PowerPoint presentation in the last month so that I didn't have to make new foils when changes occurred - and I took the opportunity to modify some charts to make them more readable. The downside is that, with 50 slides for a 60 minute program, I had to move quickly. There were many comments and questions from the audience.

QHGS meets in a church parish hall and the attendees have to sit in hard chairs at round tables. The slides are projected on a wall to the left of the podium, while most of the audience is to the right of the podium. They should either mover the speaker to the left of the projector or move the projector to the right of the podium.

All in all it was a fun exchange, and I enjoyed talking to many QHGS members. My thanks to President Liz Myers and John McCoy for making this event a success and a lot of fun for me and my wife. The equipment worked well. I hope that the QH members got some useful tips out of the presentation to help them find their elusive ancestors hiding in the census records.

We drove home after the talk, stopping in San Juan Capistrano for dinner, and getting home at about 7 PM. I was so tired last night that I couldn't raise my fingers to the keyboard to blog about it - but I did find the energy to watch "Desperate Housewives" at 9 PM. I keep hoping that they will do something like "Desperate Genealogists" where the men and ladies on Wisteria Lane date and bed some lonely genealogists.

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