Well, finally some time to post. Seems I left work a little early last Friday to get to Tampa in time to unpack gear, and have a great Head-Fi weekend ... next thing I know, it's now Monday evening, and I have just slowed down enough to get to a non-work computer with some time on my hands.
Where to start? It was a fantastic, memorable weekend on many levels - people, places, food, great music and gear - all while hanging out with very cool people - it doesn't get any better than that.
All the usual suspects (except gsferrari) were there. NightWoundsTime
(Matt) was super organizer, host and tour guide. Matt's mom and dad, Doug & Barbara
were a pleasure to meet, and were super nice to bring authentic Cuban sandwiches and homemade cookies for lunch - then they were very cool and hung out with us for a while. Wmcmanus
(Wayne) kept his string of Florida meets alive, and brought his usual high level of enthusiasm, comeraderie, and joy to all. It was Wayne who originally put us on the map by bringing his amazing and impressive gear to the original Florida meet in Clearwater, and he has stuck with us since - we thank you, Wayne, and hope to always have you at our parties. You know you've almost hit the big time when famous out of towners like immtbiker
(for the third time, Steve, we are not worthy - well, ok, we are) show up. Aaron and Stevie were terrific to be with, and brought great gear - Aaron's R10's, Qualia's, and the HeadRoom Desktop (both Home & Portable, on loan from Tyll) were mainstay's of the meet, and Stevieo had that adorable Stax portable. tyrion and jp11801
(Mike & John) - who needs to bring gear when you brew and supply us with Head-Fi IPA, an absolutely stellar, hoppy, with just right head of foamy goodness ale? A new standard has been set in meet refreshment, between the Cubans and the HF IPA. Flecom
(Frank) - two amazing pieces - that work in progress Dynahi, and those new AKG 701's - if those two were all I saw that day, the meet was worth it. PsychoZX
(Joe) - what can I say? Joe was the first guy I saw there - he came to the front desk as I was checking in - I looked up, and there was this dude with franken-HF-1's and a big smile on his face. Great to see you again, and sorry about that R10 disease not going away. Guss2
(Gary) - so good to see you again, and even nicer to meet Xenia
, and having the pleasure of her company for the weekend. Gary, you are a fortunate man on many acounts - new HE90's, great amp on the way, SCD1 in the house, and the love of a good woman. Mikeg
- always a pleasure to see my old friend, Mike and wife Holly
(one of 4, count 'em 4 - is that some kind of record? - women in attendance). Mike, the SDS, Exemplar modded D-2900, and R10's are about as good as it can get, and it was very considerate of you to go to the effort of sharing them with us. New guy, dburna
Dave and wife, Kathleen - what a pleasure to meet and spend time with you both. Glad you came over, and have fun selecting a headphone system.Ray Samuels
(Ray Samuels Audio) and Justin
(Headamp) - thank you, thank you, thank you for coming all the way to our little meet, and sharing your wonderful creations. Ray, your amps never sounded better, and Justin, your work and lineup is very impressive - I think I will be spending some time quality with Gary after he gets his HE90 amp.
Friday night - what a blast - tyrion, jp11801, Guss2 & gf, Xenia, Wmcmanus, stevieo, and I went to concert at the Tampa Theatre.
Saw great show of Charlie Musselwhite and Blind Boys of Alabama
. Charlie plays the finest Blues Harp of all time, and the Blind Boys are one of a kind.
After the show came the obligatory mini meet in hotel room - much fun conversation, some listening, and some mighty fine Head-Fi IPA to wash it all down.
Sat morning dawned early, and the amazing confusion that is a Head-Fi meet day took over. Brought gear to room, and got it set up - phone call from Aaron arriving at airport - get Aaron (just 1 1/2 miles away, thanks to Matt's great meet planning), then it's off to the races. These things never go to plan, and they are usually all the better for it. Too discombobulated to post many impressions right now, but I will comment on other's already posted in subsequent posts, and perhaps add a few slants of my own. There was no shortage of impressive gear there, and it all sounded very sweet, indeed.
As to after meet activities, however, I will post a few lines. The remaining Head-Fi'ers (Wmcmanus, Ray Samuels, Stevieo, immtbiker, Guss2, NightWoundsTime, and me) had the awesome responsibility of insuring the proper journey to legal adulthood of Gary's (Guss2) girlfriend, Xenia - and we were up to the challenge
What followed was a night of fun and frolic in Tampa's answer to New Orlean's Bourbon St, Key West's Duval St, or Miami's South Beach - yes, we went to Ybor City
, and had a memorable night out on the town. Here's some more pics of Ybor
, a truly fun place to party. Happy Birthday (cumpleaños felices), Xenia - thanks for sharing it with us.