Monday, May 26, 2008

A Momentary Taste of WisCon

That's the name of WisCon's official newsletter (though this year they're doing it as a blog), and it sums up my con experience this year.

Although I took Friday off, Eugene had an important errand to run in the afternoon, so we didn't leave for Madison until close to 5:00. We stopped along the way, so we didn't arrive at our hotel until nearly 8:00. Unfortunately, we weren't able to get a room in the con hotel this year, so we were in an overflow hotel. The silver lining was that we had a suite, which is nice because we could put Alex to sleep in one room and stay up in the bedroom. But this meant we had to tote everything we needed for Alex and Eugene's photography equipment with us for a few blocks. It's also the main reason I skipped all of the nighttime activities at the con, even the dessert function I'd prepaid for; I didn’t want to be walking around by myself late at night.

After visiting the Farmer's Market Saturday morning, I picked up my registration packet and brought Alex to the on-site daycare. (He clung to me every time I brought him there because it was strange to him; he's much better at his normal daycare. But this afternoon, he was playing like a whirling dervish.) I also brought some copies of the anthology to the BroadUniverse table for sale. Then I went to my first panel while Eugene bummed up and down State Street. We met for lunch (picking up Alex so the daycare providers could have their own break). After lunch, I participated in a rapid-fire reading with a dozen other members of BroadUniverse; people told me afterwards my reading went well. I went to another panel, then volunteered at the BroadUniverse table for an hour. We had dinner at our favorite Japanese restaurant. Alex did OK for a while but got fussy toward the end.

On Sunday, I went to three panels. I skipped a panel in the middle of the afternoon to bum around State Street myself. I could have splurged in Wintersilks--there was a teal silk blazer I came within a hair's-breath of buying--but limited myself to one silk tee. (The near-purchase gave me an idea for a short story, though.) We had dinner at a tapas restaurant before returning to our hotel; I had to leave early with Alex because the noise got to be too much for him.

I never do much at the con on Monday. We checked out of our hotel and immediately went to the con hotel to make reservations for next year. Then we left Madison. We stopped along the way to visit my parents. Now we’re trying to unwind before going back to work tomorrow.

It was great to be back in Madison in the spring again; when the weather is good for Memorial Day weekend, it doesn't get much better than it did this weekend. It was also good to be back at WisCon again, though I did feel a little isolated by not going to the parties and other nighttime events. I didn't get much time with my friend Margie either. Apologies to our Madison friends that we weren’t able to get together this time. We definitely will in the fall for our yearly reunion.

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