When I was a kid and my parents could still stand being within a city block of one another, I was often dragged along on incredibly long car trips to furniture and fireplace tradeshows, the largest being High Point Market in North Carolina.
Every time we went, my parents would pack armfuls of pamphlets and paper into the car, picking up samples and arguing pros and cons of one unit over another. Simply put, it was business. I wouldn't wander around with them much, though; normally I'd be dumped in a kid's area with plenty of other snot-nosed children whose parents tugged them along to these big grown-up hullaballoos.
There wasn't much for kids to do at these things, my parents said.
But High Point wasn't just some big, boring, adult convention, my dad explained. It's actually the largest furnishings industry trade show in the world with over 11 million square feet of show space and over 2,000 exhibitors, and when he told kid me that, I was like,
"Wow. That's… Really, really big? Cool?"
When I turned 23 (and my parents could absolutely, positively no longer stand being within a city block of on another), I was given the opportunity to experience my first tech trade show, the largest being the Consumer Electronics Show (or CES) in Las Vegas.