What’s a slig?

by Linda Okazaki

I arrived in Salt Lake City to attend “SLIG”, the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy. Though I may have been “doing” genealogy for about 15 years, truly “researching” is another matter. I’ve been doing that for about three. And this is my first big  conference; genealogically speaking, that is. Oh, I’ve attended a smattering of small events, gone to lectures, watched webinars, listened to podcasts, but this is on a completely different level. On the first evening, attendees were to sit at tables according to the courses they selected. Mine was “Researching in Washington D.C. without Leaving Home”. I had wanted to meet the instructors for some time. In fact, a professional genealogist who I hired for extensive assistance with Japanese research recommended them to me ages ago. What I didn’t realize was that the instructors would be at the table with the attendees. It was a casual and comfortable way to get to know one another. Not stuffy. Not intimidating. But still, I faltered and fluttered when  the woman next to me started chatting. Lovely, personable, very easy to talk to, yet someone I had previously only read or heard about. Usually cocktail party chit-chat is my thing. I love to sit next to some anonymous person and strike up a conversation.  But this was different. It may not be Hollywood to you, but it is to me.