Thursday, December 17, 2009

Let the San Francisco adventure begin! (AGU 2009)

I put the finishing touches on my poster for a Friday poster session while flying to San Francisco (my companions--my advisor and a lab mate--finished their powerpoints on the plane, too). Our plane arrived at the San Francisco airport a little late tonight because of air traffic control issues (read: it's foggy). Then my advisor looked it over and approved it after a couple of minor revisions as we rode the BART (like DC's metro) to the hotel. We knew there were several Kinko's within walking distance of the hotel, but first order of business needed to be food.

My advisor, a lab mate, and I dropped our luggage at our hotel before walking to a Japanese restaurant for dinner. I had some excellent Salmon Teryaki (served with a small salad, miso soup, and rice). I ate a whole dinner in a reasonable amount of time with chopsticks! That is nothing short of amazing to me since I've never been very good with chopsticks. My companions had sushi. I've never been a big fan of sushi, but I didn't mind one of the kinds my lab mate shared with me. I should check with her what it was.

After dinner, my advisor and I set out to have my poster printed. The nearest Kinko's was only a few blocks away... and closed 20 minutes before we got there. Perhaps a quarter to a half a mile away, there was a 24-hour Kinko's. That'd work. Our path took us into an area that had progressively fewer (working) streetlights. Perhaps half the windows had bars on them and there seemed to be an abundance of local spray paint artists. Regardless, we soldiered on and found the store.

A very friendly employee greeted us. He asked what we needed printed and took us right to the computer to look at the file. When he double-clicked to see the contents of the memory stick, the computer claimed it was not formatted and asked if he wanted to format it. He did not understand what the question meant. I informed him that we did not want to format the memory stick. I'm still not sure if this was a mac/PC problem (I have a mac, they use PCs) or something else. He asked if we could send him the file. Sure, as long as I have my poster printed by tomorrow evening and it turns out well.

After our lovely sightseeing on the way to Kinko's, my advisor grabbed a taxi to take us back to our hotel. I jumped through all the required hoops to get on the free wireless, emailed my poster as a PDF (which involved a bit of patience since I was emailing a 20MB attachment), and confirmed the printing options when the friendly employee called me. My poster should be ready by late afternoon tomorrow. Thank goodness! I hope they print it correctly.

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