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Debbie Ridpath Ohi reads, writes and illustrates for young people. Every few weeks, she shares new art, writing and resources; subscribe below. Browse the archives here.

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nasty gnomes

Today, it feels as though a dozen tiny gnomes are inside my head. Half of them are stuffing every crevice with hot cotton; the others are taking sledge hammers and banging on my brain.

I went to the International Small Business Congress yesterday with my Scotiabank contact, Darrell. I'm glad I went in spite of feeling ill...the branch only sponsored two entrepreneurs this year, and the other one never showed up. A brief crisis when they couldn't find my name at the registration desk, but it turns out they had me listed under Debbie Didpath-Ohi instead of Debbie Ridpath Ohi. I was surprised when they handed over my free briefcase...all attendees get one! Sort of cool-looking, with lots of pockets and a shoulder strap. The outside pocket displayed the sponsor logos: Industry Canada, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, Canadian federal government, and "ISBC '99".

Interesting lectures, though one of the speakers used so many buzzwords (e.g. "going forward" at least half a dozen times) that it was difficult to keep a straight face. After the lectures, I went downstairs and snooped around the exhibit hall. More freebies (water bottle, Canadian pins, candy, pens, magazines) and a pile of brochures and leaflets on topics I was actually interested in (or at least had to become interested in over the next six months) such as incorporating, hiring employees, office safety, business plans, small business taxes, etc. etc.

Came home in the pouring rain (I had forgotten to bring an umbrella, of course), then staggered to my computer to finish up and send out Inklings. It's the latest I've ever sent out the newsletter, but I did get it out on time (i.e. before the end of the day).

I hope those gnomes go away soon.

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