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Gathering 2004 was a blast
Went out to have breakfast at the diner with everyone and we parted ways. Lynati and Emambu are heading down to Pittsburgh and Aaron, Mara, Revel and Spacie have a very long haul to Houston.
Had a great time, but am depressed cause I hate this part... a lot.
I suppose I should now start my con journal.
Getting to this Gathering was planned out several months in advance. Revel decided he was going to drive up with Spacebabie and would pick me up since it was in Montreal and I was on the way. Then this expanded into my brother coming, as well as Aaron and Mara... which was going to be a very tight squeeze. Then Emambu and Lynati joined in with Emambu's car... which helped a lot. It became a two car caravan with walkie talkies to stay in contact.
Wednesday, August 4th.
Spent the entire day getting ready, packing and cleaning up the house for my six guests. Constant phone calls to see where they were, plus plans to briefly chill with my friend Ron and his girlfriend Natalie who are flying back to Israel on Sunday (so this would be my last chance to see them). Ron and Natalie were at a concert in the city, and would not be in till late, and Revel said the caravan to the Gathering (here after referred to as the Rogue Squadron for reasons you'll see later), wouldn't arrive till late... Alex and I had bets as to who I'd see first.
I get a call from Ron that he and Natalie are at the train station so I go pick them up, we chill for a bit watching a re-run of "That 70's Show". Then I get a call from Revel, they're lost in Croton, and it takes a bit of doing but we manage to talk them to my street and drive way.
Gods, except for Mara I have not seen any of them in over a year. It was great, and my kitchen was very, very crowded. We eat, we chat, Revel and Spacebabie set up the inflatable bed in the dining room for themselves and drift off to sleep while the rest of us relocate up here to check e-mail, chat, watch AMVs, etc, etc, etc. At some point I dropped Ron and Natalie off at Ron's house.
We finally manage to get to sleep at around 3:30 am, with plans to be out of the house and on the road by noon.
That does not happen.
Thursday, August 5th
We try to get up early, but considering this crew (I am very guilty of this as well) we don't all end up up till at least 11 am. Then it's a while to get everyone showered and dressed and out. Plus we need to go to the hardware store so Lynati can pick up some wiring for her wings. Afterwards it's to the gas station for gas and some sodas.
Finally around 2:30 we are on the the Rogue Squadron is on the road. We head south to cross the Tappan Zee Bridge and head north... Montreal is well over 300 miles away, but traffic is light and we're making good time, we figure it shouldn't take more than a five hours to make the drive. Plus we have the walkie talkies to keep contact between the two cars. I'm riding in Revel's SUV (which is gold and named Hyena) and Aaron is riding in Emambu's car... dubbed affectionatly The Mafia Cruiser. We're constantly in contact and only have to make one stop in this back water town. These are the parts of New York state I never see. There is a town in NY called Troy... and there's another one called Coxsackie... we had a lot of fun with that name.
Finally we make it to the border... which had hundreds of cars all moving at a snails pace... and why, because the Canadian border controllers are on strike... but since it is illegal for them to strike, they are slowing things up as much as possible. We sit there for about 90 minutes. Finally, we get through and everyone stops to use the bathroom... and funny enough, once we crossed the border the temperature just dropped that very instant... so out come the trenchcoats. Nice to have trenchcoat weather during summer time and at a Gathering.
We get back into our cars and start heading north another 40 miles to Montreal... where we enter what we called The Death Star Trench The high way was reduced to one lane surrounded by these concrete barriers... and Aaron grabs the walkie talkie and starts quoting from the original Star Wars movie all sorts of lines from when they are flying through the Death Star trench, and we're quoting follow up lines... this goes on for several miles, and I have to say it's a good thing no cars broke down because we'd have been fucked, there is no where on either side to pull off. We figured the Canadian High Way unions do the same thing as ours'... they waste money.
Finally we make see the Montreal skyline, which has the weird search light shining all over the place, so in the geek moment, I use my Frodo voice and way "We made it to Mordor. It's the Eye". It takes us a bit of time to find the hotel because none of the signs are written in English. Which leads to one of the great weekend quotes from Aaron.
Montreal is like Broadway. It's large, slightly confused, boring and can't read or write English.
But we finally find the hotel, which was easy to find, and check in, there is a crowd of people and Sapphire comes up to say hi... and I regret to say that I did not recognize her without her glasses, with longer hair, and with her tattoos covered... Sapph, if you read this, I'm sorry.
We check in, and immedietly my keys are handed to a bellboy... which I snatch back, I will find my room myself, and I don't want to have to tip him. We put our bags in our room, and come back down. Here we run into Seth/IRC Goliath... and a bunch of other people, I'm blanking out on names, I'm sure someone will remind me.
Hudson, Chris Rogers and his crew arrive and we immedietly start talking Gathering 2005. And at the time, Chris asks Aaron to be his Treasurer, and Aaron says yes. And for those of you who don't know, Aaron and I had a pact after Gathering 2003 that if either of us ever seriously considered being on con staff again, we'd commit ritual suicide. But the pact was broken, and I did not feel like ritual suidice anyway.
We all hang, and finally the G2004 staff and Greg Weisman arrives. Greg gives me some good natured ribbing for last year, which is fine, I have a sense of humor about it, and it is funny. Ironically enough, I was more at ease with Greg this year than at previous years, because there was still the celebrity Gargoyles creator thing going, but this year we were like old friends instead of series creator and series fan. And Greg is just one of the greatest people in the world any way. It was great to see him again.
It was really great to see Crzy Jen, cause I was always disappointed that she couldn't make it to Gathering 2003. It was really great, and finally as one con chair to another I went up to Karine to tell her it would all be over soon... I said it humorously though... but seriously, Karine did all this and was five months pregnant. Talk about an iron will.
The con staff goes to bed and the rest of us hang out with Greg Weisman in the lobby for about another hour. And afterwards we decide it's time for bed, had a long drive and we all need sleep.
To Be Continued...
"I dropped Ron and Natalie off at Ron's house"
You mean you're still allowed to drop people off?!!!
HAVE WE LEARNED NOTHING, PEOPLE?!!
Sorry, G. Couldn't resist. ;)