Yesterday, I attended a Child Care Seminar put on by the Appelbaum Training Institute. called Spread a Little Sunshine. The title was sort of ironic, given the conditions of the day.
The seminar was scheduled to start at 8:00. I arrived 20 minutes early, so I’d have time to check out the teacher store. What a surprise when I pulled on to the street to find a line of cars! I finally got up to the parking lot, to find it was full. In the full lot, there was a bus parked across about 7 parking spots, and several cars double parked. Frustrating, but oh well. A man in the lot said there was overflow parking in the lot across the street. I circled that lot to find it too was full. OK… now what? Another guy told us to park down at the Embassy Suites parking lot (about a block away, but with a fenced in Park N Fly in between). If it were warm out, I’d have welcomed the walk (almost a mile going around the Park N Fly and up the block). It would have been good for my training, and I DID have my new shoes on! Unfortunately, temps were in the 20’s if not colder, and of course, I forgot my gloves. Luckily, they had a shuttle going between the hotels to pick all of us up. So, about 10 minutes AFTER the seminar was supposed to start, I finally arrived there.
Luckily, our speaker hadn’t really started yet, as so many people were running late. Our speaker was Marty Applebaum, co-founder of the company. It was amazing, almost like seeing a celebrity. He even rode on the shuttle bus after the seminar with us – so cool! Anyway, almost right away, he said something to the effect of, “Let’s not role play the children in our care we find most frustrating. Let’s choose to ‘Spread a Little Sunshine’ today.” I don’t think he even realized how crabby so many people were due to the parking conditions.
Our first break came, and there was a LONG line of people waiting to buy lunch tickets. People were sitting there complaining – non-stop! They were complaining about the last minute change of venue, the parking situation, the fact that in a couple hours, we’d be waiting in just as long of lines for lunch, anything they could think of! People were blaming Appelbaum Training, the hotel, the weather, you name it. Wow – come on, people! I told the whiners that I had been to several of their seminars before, and had NEVER had problems. As the ladies were all complaining, I tried (and failed) to lighten the mood. I said, “Come on people, we get pooped on, puked on, snot wiped on us, etc. all the time… we can roll with this…” Yeah, that didn’t really work! They just wanted to complain!
By spending the day complaining, they were missing out on a great seminar! Sometimes, people just need to roll with the punches! What good does it do to complain? There was nothing we could do to change any of the circumstances. There were 800 or so people that the hotel had to make accommodations for that they only found out the week before about. Why not just relax, enjoy the day, and be happy we were getting 6 clock hours for a minimal investment, AND, we got to see a fabulous speaker presenting the information?!?