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Nineteen days. 2,573.8 miles. Priceless good times and at least one unanticipated adventure that turned out delightfully well. Yay, life!

Day 1 Picked up randy_byers at BOS. Dinner and much amusement with debgeisler and benveniste at Sunset Grill & Tap. This is the only time I'll be indecisive about bheer for the entire trip. I blame sleep deprivation, which is just another way of saying I'm the only one to blame.

Deb & Mike made two amazing contributions to the All Worldcons, All the Time Bheer Tasting at SFContario, one physically large, the other physically small. Much to my surprise, the 10'x10' Lens Family rug from Noreascon 4 fit in my car along with all the bheer, party decorations, fanzines, knitting, kipple, and luggage. Much to my delight, their 1987 Thomas Hardy's Ale was fabulous.

A quick stop at the NESFA Clubhouse meant cogitationitis could load us up with other Noreascon kipple and decor, then it was on to Toad Woods with fringfaan for a shared bottle of scrumptious Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale under Renovation's Laser Star Projector.

Day 2 Road Trip! Road Trip! Great visit with Ron Drummond in Troy! randy_byers reacquainted himself with American roads by doing most of the driving, displaying a healthy sense of self-preservation considering the toasty shape I was in. So many hours of conversation passed that we barely had time to listen to all of Eric Idle's The Quite Remarkable Adventures of the Owl and the Pussycat before pulling into the SFContario Ramada in Toronto. (Thanks, fredcritter. I still love, love, love the CD all these years later.)

Days 3-5 SFContario: Wow! A fan can't go wrong when Dave Langford writes her bio for the program book. SFContario Chair avt_tor, his wife mvt, and SFContario Vice-chair marahsk welcomed us in the lobby when we arrived, all the more notable considering it was after midnight the night before the convention began. It was great finally meeting Merle after reading about her on Alex's LJ for some years.

The entire weekend was filled with an abundance of fun; silliness; fannish gossip; good and interesting times with friends old and new; bheer, bheer, bheer, and more bheer at the All Worldcons, All the Time Bheer Tasting; Peeps in the microwave (inscribed with a Sharpie but not on sticks); music; and more. So much more. randy_byers and Pat Virzi are the bestest roommates and party co-hosts ever. pnh was a huge help and excellent company unloading the car (remember that rug, the bheer, and everything else?) and also on the party shopping run all over Toronto. kip_w, malibrarian, and their daughter Sarah were great help and excellent company during party set-up, dinner, and more. tnh was suitably gobsmacked to see her MagiCon Fan Lounge Izzard in a position of honor for the party. TNH, PNH, and papersky created the Fannish Fortune Cookies Party Game; the complete, original set of fortunes fill two flip-chart pages and are in my car for transcribing RSN. More Film at 11, I hope and intend.

Days 6-9 My plans to visit more with Mike Glicksohn and to stick around for the Dead, Dessicated Dinosaur party and an overnight at c_crockett and asfi's were immediately abandoned upon receiving an unexpected call from my father and hearing Daddy say he was headed to the hospital. Overnight observation followed by EKG alarm strips that still cause medical professionals to catch their breaths and go "Wow" followed by a speedy trip to the Cath Lab followed by a temporary pacemaker followed by a permanent pacemaker followed by a bit more unwelcome excitement that turned out to be only an anomaly followed by a quiet night followed by Daddy's home sweet home and a Thanksgiving overflowing with a great big brand new thing to be thankful for.

Days 10-13 Broke my usual pattern of arriving early and staying late at carnyjack's, pulling in the day after Thanksgiving rather than the day before. Good and quiet times with him; ever so welcome hugs and catching up with kaffyr and dr_whuh; and productive, easy-going meetings with Chicon 7 Chair Dave McCarty and Publications Division Head Bill Roper. Have I mentioned that I'm Chicon 7's Artistic Director? More Film at 11 on that, too. In my Copious Free Time, naturally.

Days 14-15 Back to Daddy's to see that all's still well with him. Then to A-squared for an overnight stay with netmouse, flinx and their delightful, relaxed, and inquisitive daughter Rosie.

Days 16-18 Drive, drive, drive, drive, drive, and drive 651 miles across MI, OH, PA, and NJ to NY and Edie's Thursday night knitting group. Something of a necessary Zombie Day Friday followed by excellent food and company for dinner at Mima Vinoteca in Irvington, NY, and the Judy Collins concert at the Irvington Town Hall Theater. Such a fine evening was only made better by staying at Fanhihall and hanging out with Edie for the rest of the weekend. Saturday included an outing to an open house at Faraway Farm where we saw many beautiful, calm alpacas and many temptations in the Farm Store, too. We visited with Edie's father for the rest of the day as I worked on magazine layout and Edie finished knitting a baby sweater. Good phone conversations with Daddy and Gavi helped keep me connected to other places I'd also be if only I could clone myself. Life remains good even without cloning.

Day 19 Waking up to shower and pack for the last time on this trip...running helpful errands and such before hitting the road...

I didn't set the needle at 120, despite my fondness for The Billys' Wichita. Instead I ran one last errand in Yorktown Heights then stopped by Turco's for groceries to help take the edge off the empty fridge at home. Finally on the highway, I immediately scheduled another stop by calling elaine_brennan and letting her know I wasn't far from Naugatuck, CT. Why, yes, the town is best known for the immense herds of legendary Naugas that once populated the area. While I normally favor source material over Wikipedia, when it comes to Naugas, Wikipedia is well worth reading, too.

Elaine, her mother, and I didn't speak of Naugas, but rather of ancestors as they very kindly listened and shared my laughter over various Gobsmacked by Genealogy Squier family stories. A choice of tea and cocoa enjoyed to the laughter of friends. It's been that kind of trip, again and again. Finestkind, and All That Jazz...

The Zeppelin Hangar was still standing when I finally pulled in the driveway Sunday evening. A heavy box was propped by the door. Inside the box, I found the beautimous, 608-page Acutonics book From Galaxies to Cells: Planetary Science, Harmony and Medicine. Noted typographer and book designer John D. Berry brought me to implement his design and do the layout on the project for Ellen Franklin. While most readers of this journal know John through his beautiful design work on fanzines and as a long-time science fiction fan, he's also the current president of Association Typographique Internationale, a past director of the Type Directors Club, and also former editor and publisher of Upper & lower case magazine (U&lc) and of U&lc Online. Heady company, indeed. I loved the opportunity to work with John, and would gladly do so again anytime, anywhere.

I'm both proud of and thrilled with the appearance of the finished book. I heartily recommend Asia Pacific Offset for printing enormous, 4-color books. Many thanks to John for bringing me in on the project and handing me the best, most complete design template I've ever had the pleasure of working with, and also to Ellen for her outstanding organizational skills, attention to detail, and patience as we brought the magnum opus to fruition.

So, yes, a great trip, and a great welcome home. Now it's back to the rest of that magazine layout and other work, work, work!

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
netmouse
Dec. 6th, 2010 01:31 pm (UTC)
It was delightful to see you as always. I used some of the lemongrass in cooking dinner for my birthday - a roast chicken dish in chicken broth with onion, garlic and carrots in addition to the lemongrass, and mashed potatoes to accept the broth. For tonight I will add more lemongrass and make it into a soup. :)

randy_byers
Dec. 6th, 2010 05:13 pm (UTC)
John had a copy of the book at Vanguard on Saturday, but I didn't get a chance to look at it. Must have a beer with him Real Soon Now so I can rectify that.

Thanks for all the splendid fun on the way to SFContario and at the convention. It was good to be your groupie for a weekend!
wild_irises
Dec. 6th, 2010 07:14 pm (UTC)
I would be delighted to admire the book as long as I was not called upon to admire the contents ...
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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