1. The people were really nice, welcoming, and including. I wonder if I would still be doing science if I did my PhD in a different field (some of my issues during my PhD were people -related).
2. That being said, discovering the education & outreach community felt like going home. They are definitely my people.
3. I learned more from, and was more interested in, talks not having to do with my PhD research (perhaps another clue I did the wrong thing?).
4. I find it really hard just to go up and talk to someone I don't know. But, if someone comes up to me, I can talk it up with the best of them.
5. Hosting a booth was great to talk to people, have as a meeting place, a quiet place during the day to check email, and to use as storage. Plus, it actually saved us money because the cost (which included two registrations) was cheaper than two regular-member registrations.
6. I forgot how long conference days are! Usually, I was at the conference from 8:30am to 9pm.
7. I'm definitely no longer 22. Not only did I look forward to going back to the hotel each night, I also didn't feel guilty about it whatsoever.
8. Coming home is the best part of any trip.