Friday, April 22, 2016

Phoenix Work Trip

I just got back from another business trip to Phoenix.  As usual I can't talk publicly about who we did work for or even the partners or platforms we used... which were cutting edge, expensive and freaking amazing!  What I can briefly talk about is the cool Kildeer bird we saw protecting it's eggs in the back lot of the Scottsdale Cardno Office, the great people I worked with and the great views I had from our job site, both of mountains and cool critters!

Eric and I jumped on a plane Monday to fly over the Grand Canyon to Phoenix where we met up with our acquisition partners and had a great late night meal at the Roaring Fork restaurant with all of them before sensor integration in the office the next day.  I was sent down to capture marketing media for us so at some point the sensor and platform will be announced but I'll leave that info off in this post assuming that QSI is probably going to be trolling my shit for years trying to find a way to sue me again.  

During sensor integration at the office we noticed that an area of the back lot where they survey trucks are kept was roped off with orange cones.  Apparently a small Killdeer bird had laid it's eggs there which blended in well with surrounding gravel.  Every time someone approached the bird it had a cool defense mechanism of drawing the predators away from its eggs by acting injured, thereby an easier and more appealing meal.  It was pretty fascinating to watch as it chirped and awkwardly flapped it's wings around trying to scare me a away.  Beautiful bird as well.  

After the sensor integration we drove north out of Phoenix for several hours to stay in Cottonwood, AZ which turned out to be a pretty cool town.  We stayed at the Best Western and because I had a first floor room I got to sleep with the expensive platform!  On the way to Cottonwood we stopped at a Bass Pro shop to pick up some supplies as well as a Camping World for a generator to power laptops in the field.  I'd never been to a Bass Pro shop and was shocked at how huge it was all it's stuffed animals and elaborate outdoor scenes.  At Camping World I also took the time to jump into some $300,000 RVs to check out the interiors and was blown away!  That night we had a great dinner at Nic's Steak and Crab shack where I got a big rib eye steak!

We had a wonderful acquisition day on Wednesday without incident (except a bee stinging Eric) even though the road we drove to get to the site was crazy steep and dangerous.  We flew two missions and even with some high wind gusts all went well and I was able to capture a ton of great photos and videos from the day.  We even spotted a horned lizard that I got some close up shots of.  For crazy hot Arizona I was also surprised to see some snow-capped mountains in the distance.  On the way out of the site we ran into a crazy couple on a 4x4 buggy that apparently were lost and needed to get through one of the access gates.  Our client let them through on our way out but the best part was watching the old guy haggle with our client about access all while wearing a visor that had an integrated blonde spiky hair wig with it!  That night we ate at the Tavern Grill and I ate up a delicious Prime Rib.  

Because we had such a successful day on Wed, Thursday was pretty relaxing for us.  We took our time in the morning leaving the hotel and back at the Cardno office we leisurely got everything packed up and ready to go and had a good lunch at a place called "Frank and Lupe's Old Mexico" which wasn't great but not awful either.  I had chosen all the other places to check out for food and this was one of our partner's choices.  From there it was to the airport.  Rob was able to luckily catch an early flight but Eric and I had to wait until 9pm for our late one.  During that time we had a wonderful time chatting it up with our partners over drinks at the airport.  They are great people and I really hope to be able to work with them again!  Project success!!!!

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