Okay, maybe I didn’t shave my legs, but I was still up before 7 a.m., and I even brushed my teeth! That has to count for something, doesn’t it?
Why was I up at such an ungodly hour, you may ask? Because we’re working a vendor booth at the Hershey RV Show this week – America’s “largest” RV show. I know it’s the largest, because it says so right there on their website. Uh huh, and I stand six feet tall, weigh 100 pounds, and have a full head of hair. It must be true, because you read it right here on my blog, right?
Here is a picture I took about 10 a.m. yesterday morning of the aisle where our vendor booth is located. Everybody you see in this picture is a vendor, except for the person in the gray sweatshirt in the rear left side of the aisle.
Here’s another picture I took of our vendor aisle, from the opposite direction, just before 11 a.m. Hey, it’s a customer, the guy in the blue jeans in the rear! Everyone else you see is a vendor.
About 2 p.m. it started to rain, driving all of the people who were outside looking at RVs inside the building. We had a rush!
And here’s the vendor aisle just before 7 p.m. The guy on the left with the white hat on is a customer, the guy on the right, fiddling with the bike is a vendor. Do you see a pattern here? While we did have a few (very few) little busy spurts, most of the day I could have fired a shotgun down the aisle and never hit anybody.
Last year, the Hershey Show claimed to have 37,000 attendees. Unless they all show up in one really big bus today or tomorrow, I don’t think they’ll be breaking any records soon.
Vendor hours are from 9 a.m., to 8 p.m., and if you have never stood on top of an ice rink for eleven hours, trust me, it’s an experience you don’t need to seek out. Just as they did Wednesday evening. a lot of vendors gave up and left a little after 6 p.m., and the place was almost empty. The show directors came on the public address system several times, warning vendors that they were not allowed to leave before 8 p.m. Many ignored them, because they had already left.
Miss Terry wanted to stick it out until closing time, and I grudgingly agreed, until somebody from the show came through the vendor area “taking attendance.” Apparently, if you leave early, they fine you, and if you won’t pay the fine, you can’t come back next year. Now, anybody who knows me well knows that the best way to get the Nixter to do something it to tell me I can’t do it! As soon as Terry told me about the attendance taker, I was packed up and out of there in about five minutes!
It is totally asinine to expect vendors to stand around on a cold ice rink for that many hours a day if they don’t have any customers to sell to! A longtime vendor told me that the number of vendors has dropped dramatically at this show in the last few years. Why do you think that is?
They tell us that today and Saturday will be killer days, with customers pouring in the doors, but it would really have to do a dramatic turnaround before we would ever consider coming back to this show. Lost time is lost time, and you can never get it back, no matter how well you do the next day. Never say never, but I just don’t see it happening for us.
Thought For The Day – The sooner you fall behind, the more time you’ll have to catch up.