Monday, April 16, 2012

# big dog ink # c2e2

C2E2 Day 1 - Friday the 13th...

Woo! Guess where I just got back from? Well, if you read here last week, you would know that I spent the weekend in Chicago...all by myself! Eek! Clearly though, I survived and I have returned bearing lots of new and hopefully fabulous things to write about. In fact, I have enough review material to last quite a while! So, over the next few days, I'm going to give you a general run down of what I did, who I talked to and how me, the girl from Middle of Nowhere, Michigan, handled riding the train and making her way downtown. (Does anyone else immediately hear this song when I say making her way downtown?

So, let's get started, shall we? My weekend started bright and early on Friday. I had to get up, finish packing everything up and then loading it all into the van. Pretty routine for a weekend away. Nothing too exciting there. For those wondering (and know that I own a ton of bags), I took the apple bag and the bag of holding (aka the button bag) for this trip. I made a trip into Ionia to pick up some last minute essentials and breakfast foods and then, I was on the road!

Well, I tried to be on the road! I had to stop at the gas station and I swear the pump had it in for me. Just as I start pumping gas, I notice the sign that says the auto shutoff off. Ugh! I can see it now, gas running all over the place while I'm thinking about something else. Of course, this made me totally paranoid so I just started at the nozzle inside the side of the van. I had nothing to worry about because at $50 it just refused to let me put more gas in.  That would have been awesome except the tank wasn't full. Geez louise. I gave up and got on the road.

The drive..uneventful. Just another long drive that I won't bore you with. Then, I got near Chicago and what the heck? The gps made me drive over that bridge that I totally hate and have to mumble reassuring phrases to myself all the way across. Thank goodness nobody could hear me or they'd have totally labeled me a crazy head. It's true. I have this issue with heights which means things like down escalators and tall bridges that I have to drive across freak me out big time.

Clearly though, I survived and after dealing with downtown traffic, made it to my hotel. I had more fun here. Problem 1: I didn't have the card that the reservation had been made with. They decided to ignore this though because the room was paid in full already.  Problem 2: My room was on the 4th floor and my van..the other side of a huge parking lot. Now, a smart person would have grabbed a luggage cart? Did I? Nope. I'm stubborn and decided I could do this. After all, the elevators were right there the woman said..and how far down on the 4th floor could it be? Right. Let's just say that by the time I got to my room, I was ready to throw my favorite apple suitcase out the 4th floor window. I didn't, however, because I really didn't want to go naked all weekend. Not even at a comicon is that ok.

Want to see my room? Here you go:

Pretty fancy schmancy, eh? So, I finally made it and sat out my stuff before decided to...brave the train! That's right! I went ahead and went on down to the convention center on Friday night to pick up my pass. Of course, this wasn't as simple as grabbing a shuttle. First, there was a shuttle to the airport. The very nice driver and an off duty maid made sure that I knew how to get my pass and where to find the train. I'm glad because I never would have found it. The train right was boring as heck. I'd wished I'd brought a book with me. Then, there was finding my way out of another station and then standing around with 4 other guys waiting for the con shuttle. That took foooorever to show up but it finally did and I got down to the center with just enough time to snag my badge and to say hi to the folks at Big Dog Ink. For people who had said they were excited I was coming, they had no idea who I was! Thank goodness Brett from Bluerainbow knew who I was! Then, he was nice enough to invite me to tag along with them for dinner.

Dinner was a lot of fun, even if the prices made me pray to the gods that I was going to be able to eat the rest of the weekend. It's not often that I get asked to go to a quality eating establishment such as Gibson's. I was a bit envious of the delicious meals that were put in front of the others, but I had to be realistic and had a peppered steak salad and a lot of water. The steak was absolutely gorgeous but the salad itself was lacking. It needed more dressing and a better mixture of greens. It was supposed to be romaine and iceberg but it was about half a head of iceberg and had 4 tomato wedges as well as the 4 steak medallions. Kim, was really nice and had me try a bite of her steak and Brett was equally nice and let me try out his creme brulee. What really made the night though was listening to Jen, Nei and Shane tell lame jokes and then all of us eventually getting not only our waiter in on the comedy act, but also a busboy that he sent over. Before the night was over, I had tears in my eyes from laughing so hard.

Our waiter, Drew, telling us a joke.

After dinner, Brett was nice enough to spend ages trying to get to my hotel. He dropped me right off at the door before running Jen and Shane back to their hotel and then heading on to his. I'm really glad that I got the chance to meet him this weekend. Up until now, he's just been a name in Kate's livestream. Really, I want to say thank you to Kim, Tom, Nei, Jen, Shane and Brett for allowing me to tag along and to feel like part of a group. I don't get that experience very often and I know they're like family so to be included was something special.


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