I pushed down the tug of melancholy (how did my daughters grow up so fast?) and decided to focus instead on the kid in me. I had just stepped into the biggest and best toy store in the world.
As I squished a weird consistency of indoor sand mix between my fingers at one display — sort of like a mix between playdough and wet sand, but without any residue — my adult persona kicked in. Straighten up, I told myself, and start looking at this exhibit hall more like an industry observer. The exhibition industry is a serious business. Toys are a serious business — worldwide toy and game sales are expected to reach $95 billion by 2016. Buyers from more than 100 countries were scouting the aisles for trends and new products, and here I was getting lost in one creative play space (aka booth) after another.
In the end, after an hour or so, I decided that was okay. Every exhibit hall is meant to transport you to a world of possibilities. Too bad they can’t all be as fun as the Toy Fair.