I can't believe I've now watched all of the original Naruto anime! It only took more than three years...
I was really excited to watch this arc, far more excited than I had been about any other arc lately. The biggest reason is because I'm a Temari/Shikamaru shipper, and they were both in this arc. I was also excited that so many of the characters made appearances too though, and of course, I was excited that I got to start watching Shippuden afterwards.
This was by far my favorite arc since the Sasuke retrieval arc (unless I'm forgetting one I really liked), and it's not just because I loved every single bit of interaction between Temari and Shikamaru. I think it did a very good job at setting up Shippuden, and I'm incredibly excited to finally get started watching that. I've actually already seen most of the first arc of Shippuden. (I watched it a few years ago when it was airing on TV in English.)
I also just recently learned that there's an anime that's a spin-off of Naruto that has Lee as the main character. I think I'm going to watch those episodes when they aired in comparison to Shippuden other than right away like I considered doing.
I'm really excited to start watching Shippuden! Hopefully I'll get around to watching the first episode in the next couple of days!