Monday, November 11, 2019

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Aussies at Rootstech London

One of the Rootstech Organisers told me there were 50+ Australians registered for Rootstech London while another told me there were 60. I think I managed to hook up with about 40 of them prior to or at the event. I was told that the Australians were the second largest group of overseas registrants after genies from the USA at the event.

Some of the Aussies at Rootstech gathered for a photo
Whatever the number it was a vast improvement on the the numbers that travel to Salt Lake City each year for the annual Rootstech conference there. In my interviews and chats with the Australians in London all agreed that for the many Australians who have British, Irish and European ancestry London is a more attractive venue because it can be combined with visits to ancestral cities and towns and associated national, regional and local archives.

Cathie Sherwood, Kerry Farmer and Brad Argent represented Australia on the Rootstech London program while Fran Kitto, Sharn White, Jenny Joyce and I  acted as Ambassadors. We Ambassadors were very busy tweeting throughout the event. I also posted quite a few photos of the event on my Facebook Page here.

Prior to the event we had an active Facebook Group with lots of discussion and friendly advice being shared. We organised meetups in Sydney and London prior to the event so that we would all know some familiar faces when we got tothe Excel Centre for Rootstech London. All members of that group met new genies who became their genimates. I was especially pleased that my third cousin Regina, whom I had only met on one previous occasion was at the event. Having a fellow descendant of our convict Elizabeth Phipps from London with me there was very special.

Cousin Regina and I
I managed to interview a few Australian genies while at Rootstech London. I just wish I would have had time to chat with more. If you are considering a visit to Rootstech if it is staged again in London  then listen to what these genies had to say in our interviews and as Fran Kitto said "Start saving your pennies".

Friday, October 25, 2019

Going walkabout at Rootstech London

Mr GeniAus accompanied me to the first Rootstech London, As an Ambassador I am finding it very helpful to have his support at the event. When not attending talks he has been busy taking photos and recording interviews for me.

Yesterday I asked him to go walkabout and take some photos of the exhibitors at the event. The photos below show the diverse range of exhibitors in attendanceat Rootstech London. There is something to interest all family historians. Anyone can visit the exhibit hall for free during the event.

Friday, October 18, 2019

The Conference Checklist - Rootstech London

When I usually attend a Rootstech event it is a shorter trip from Australia to Salt Lake City followed by a spot of touristing in the USA. This time Rootstech London comes at the beginning of an eight week holiday that takes us to the US, South America and Antarctica so getting ready is a real challenge as I need clothes and gear for so many climates. I also need space for my two day shopping spree in Miami.

I had my hair cut very short but will it last the distance? Now I need to look at the checklist I did for the last geneaconference, THE Genealogy Show 2019, that I attended in England  and modify it. 

If you are looking for me at Rootstech just seek out the little old lady with the distinctive bag.

The GeniAus bag

Here is my list. Highlighted is what else I must still do
  • Airport transfer - Booked. After a 23+ hour flight we want our transfer to the hotel to be stress free. 
  • Books - A couple of unread books that I can swap on our cruise ship once read. Have also download a few eBooks from the local library onto my phone.
  • Purchase and pack breakfast bars, liquid breakfasts and healthy snacks for quick meals.
  • Pack Clothes - always a challenge
  • Deliver Paddy to his second home where he loves playing with his mate Freddo.
  • Empty the Frig and Pantry - In Progress - they already resemble Mother Hubbard's Cupboard.
  • Flights - Booked, Seats are allocated so no need to book in online.
  • Foreign Currency - Task delegated to Mr GeniAus. Have GBP and USD.
  • Hotel Accommodation - All booked.
  • Luggage - Two small suitcases are easier than one large one for an old girl to manage, I take one small carryon for the plane basically because I can't pack batteries and laptop in luggage for the hold. I can't understand why so many people carry such large bags on board - they must pack the kitchen sink. I could make do with a large handbag.
  • Maps - will rely on Google maps on my phone and 
  • Mobile Phone and Battery Pack - We have a plan that gives us international roaming and a small data allowance. It is handy to be able to phone Mr GeniAus when I lose him in a cemetery or shopping mall. I had a dinosaur battery pack that is so heavy. Now have a lighter new one that give two charges.
  • A Notebook - I lose loose bits of paper.
  • Oyster Card for travel on London network
  • Passport and ESTA (for the US) - Already in travel handbag with sleeping pills for the plane.
  • Pegs and Laundry Soap -  No need to buy expensive "travel" products. 
  • Pencil Case - a few pens and pencils and a small ruler that has a magnifying window(Handy for reading small print or old handwriting).
Nifty ruler with magnifying window 
  • Phone the Banks and Amex:  Need to let them know we are travelling, helps them monitor for fraud - Done.
  • Pills and potions - All sorted, have packed an emergency 'just in case' kit of favourites. A few days supply in handbag in case we part company with our bags.
  • Rental Car - another job for Mr GeniAus, done months ago. 
  • Compile list of research tasks for The National Archives - In progress in my Family Historian Database.
  • Clean off all my SD cards - have backed up all photos on them to two hard drives.
Storage for my SD Cards
  • Technology: Digital camera and charger, Laptop, Portable 4 TB HDD Drive ( I download and tag my photos religiously most days), Chargers, Universal Adapters. Most of this stuff lives in a purpose designed case that doesn't get unpacked between trips.  Of course my mouse will be travelling with me, I can't get by without my mouse.
  • Scan Travel Docs - Include copies of prescriptions for drugs and glasses, health report from GP, Passport, Credit cards, Driver's Licence. Save onto phone, hard drive, Google Drive and computer. Mr GeniAus carries a hard copy of files as well.
  • Should I take a Selfie Stick? I have a cheap, light one and a quality reliable one that is heavy.
  • Travel insurance - Renewed.
  • Walking stick - needed for cities with cobblestone and uneven paths.
  • Water bottle - Can fill once I have passed through security at airports.
My Travel Tech setup 
Specifically for Rootstech
  • Find out names of Aussies who are travelling to Rootstech London -- have set up a Facebook Group and organised a pre-conference dinner 
  • Blogger Beads - which ones will I wear?
  • Follow fellow Show attendees on Twitter - added a few new genimates to my feed already.
  • Conference Registration - Pass downloaded and printed
  • A light day bag for conference - Packed
  • GeniAus Business Cards 
  • GeniAus Ribbons 
  • A Notebook - I find writing notes helps me to reinforce my learning
  • Rootstech App - Downloaded
  • Schedule - Have put everything into my Google Calendar. Needs to be accessible on my phone.
  • Technology - I take a few extra toys when attending a conference as I may want to blog, vlog or interview genimates includes A dual headed microphone for interviewing with my phone. 


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