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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Chaotic Journey to Dallas

FouFou Dog has been working day and night for the past 4 months to design, develop, and market a completely NEW collection of breed-specific products targeting the gift and toy industry, called "Love Your Breed".  The initial launch of this collection was set to take place in Dallas, TX at the "Dallas Finds Show" for the home and gift market.  This show was booked months in advance and paid for in full.  Samples, display items, and signage were also shipped to the show site ready and waiting for the FouFou Dog teams arrival to build the backdrop, set up the showroom, display the products, and educate the rep team in Dallas on the best way to market this exciting new line.

Cheryl and Mike started their journey to Dallas, TX yesterday afternoon when I dropped them off at the Toronto airport around 3 pm.  Their trip had a scheduled stop over in Chicago, IL which turned out to be a complete disaster.

Their flight in the air was met with turbulence as the captain warned them of severe thunderstorms building in the Chicago area.  Upon landing, they were faced with tornado warnings and hundreds of flight cancellations throughout the O'Hare Airport. 

All passengers who had been stranded at the airport were forced to take cover in an underground tunnel as the tornado made its way through Chicago.  Below is an image taken from Cheryl's camera phone of the tunnel or 'hideout' that they were in.

Once the tornado had passed, and things were slowly starting to return to normal, it was still uncertain as to when flights would be able to leave the O'Hare Airport again and the night was still young.  Cheryl and Mike attempted to book a hotel nearby with the assumption that their first available flight out might not be until the next morning, however, all hotels within a 40 km radius were fully booked.  And so Mike resorted to sleeping in a charging pod.
Below is an image of other passengers who were given cots to sleep in at O'Hare Airport.
Finally, Cheryl and Mike were airbound again and en route to Dallas, TX where the show had already started without them.  Upon arrival, their booth was empty and on barely 2 hours of sleep, they were forced to hustle in order to get the show set up with products displayed nicely so as not to waste anymore time.  Every minute that went by could potentially be another sale lost.  

Four hours later, the FouFou Dog team made a miracle happen and the booth was set up, all products nicely displayed and were ready to start selling their butts off.


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