Unluckily, the boss wants me to work this weekend, as a co-worker will be out at least a week with a back/groin injury. His words: "Do you *really* need this weekend off?" Arggh. If he'd have called me on the phone, I'd have told him to lick my center of gravity, but in person, it's harder to say no. So I tell him I'll come in Sunday, on a "Even if I'm late, I'm not late" basis.. and get back onto the road, up Route 2 to Windsor Locks.
Arrive at the hotel at 1:20am, check in, head up the room. The roomie, Valent murakozi is still awake. We chat and he plays that darn "Nature Anthem" at me, ensuring it'll stay in my brain all convention. A quick "Hi hon, I'm at furfright, can't stay!" to the lovely Cantata on FluffMUCK, and into the shower so as not to subject Valent to fish-funk all night. (#1) Despite being dog-tired, and the amazingly comfortable beds at the Sheraton, and the nice view of the airplanes outside at Bradley International Airport.. I sleep fitfully all night. Awake again at 8, morning shower (#2), and Valent and I head downstairs for breakfast. Mmm. Breakfast buffet is always nice, highlights were a custardy "La Creme" yoghurt and disk-shaped home fries that tasted wonderful. Fortified and ready, and it's up to the mezzanine for the con!
The Dealer's room was where most of the first few hours were spent, getting conbadges done up for co-workers, picking up assorted comics and prints, a few sketches done. Aura Moser, Lucius Appoloosius (whom I caught in a hallway, actually) and Dalia all did nice work in my new sketchbook; badges included work from Patrick Raccoon, Beowulf, Caribou, Piccillo (who's underpriced and was under-used. Folks, get badges from him!) White_Wolf, Louis Furrywolfy, and Winged Siamese.
Dinner in the hotel lounge- overpriced burgers, but, at least it's food. Bumped into Royce, Sym, Zephyr (aka Gone In 60 Seconds), Toast, and some others. Headed back to the room for a while, and watched Ferris Bueller's Day Off. once that's on TV, I nearly always sit through to the end.. such classic cinema. Got in shower #3, and bought a soda from the vending machine for $1.10. 20 ounces. This struck Valent as high pricing, and me as amazingly low for a hotel in Connecticut. That's $1.19 at most conveninece stores, and nothing compared with those $4.00 poland spring bottles in the room. Gack. Half-napped, then off to catch Kaze: Ghost Warrior. "Wow, it's the best cut-scene ever!" Hate to say it, but, that's the impression that I get. Game room was nifty after that, and got my first taste of Katamari Damacy.. do think I'll need to pick up that game shortly. "Giant Squid! Jumboman! Anchor Island!"
Then came the "Draw or Die" panel, which was fun.. Piccillo versus Aura Moser with brush-pens and blacklight-responsive markers, to draw the best 'hidden art' possible. Piccillo when for a humor vibe, Aura went artsy, both were nicely done. :)
Meanwhile, the artistically-inclined in the audience drew as well: a pass-it-along comic strip challenge. everyone drew panel 1 on the upper-left quarter of a sheet of paper, then passed it along to the next person for panel 2.. then 3, and 4. Furthermore, there were topics that had to be followed: Panel 1 was "Halloween", Panel 2 was "The Election", Panel 3 was "Pizza", and Panel 2 was "Mexico." You never saw so many furries in sombreros, in that punchline panel. (Myself, I managed to cover up the worst-drawn canines ever with a clear label on the "Bag-O-Chihuahuas.")
Back to the room, watched some baseball and ate Nutri-grain bars and beef jerky, yammered with Valent yet more. I was sort of tour-guide for him at this con, and we ended up hanging out a lot of the time- which was fun, as we have a lot in common, though he's led the wilder life. Slept, and a lot better this night, until 9ish.
In the morning, shower (#4) of the convention, which must be some sort of con record: 36 hours at FurFright and 4 showers. Downstairs for breakfast, too late for the buffet though, drat. Another sweep of the dealer's room for my last wave of commerce, checked out from the room, and putzed about a bit. Valent had brought some cigars, so I smoked one while packing my car up, and we meandered outside towards the terminal. After he flew out, I picked up one last badge that was waiting, said some goodbyes, and then started the haul back to work.
It was a very good time, as cons seem to be when I spent them with a small amount of people. Felt a little odd to not be working, as I had all this.. free time! AC's such a manic rush for me, if a good one; this was a lot more low-key and unhurried,, and everything I wanted to do, I did. Having to leave early to go to work was a dissapointment, but more in that I missed the chance for more fun, not that it cost me any.
Quick out of context quotes:
"Wait, is Zombie better than Frankensponsor? I forget."
"Time for more training, Donatello."
"How are you finding these people?" "This is what mongooses do: Run and find out."
"Is [X] in the room?" "Yeah. Uhm. He's busy now." "Oooohkay we'll catch him later."
"No conviction without a confession."