For the last weekend of October, and a few days around it, I was away in San Diego for the World Fantasy Convention. I love science fiction/fantasy cons in general, and World Fantasy is my favorite of them all; it's just the right size, with around 800 people, and most of them work in genre fiction or art in some capacity.
My trip started with some time to myself. I rode a commuter train from Milwaukee to Chicago, took a cross-country train ride in a sleeper car from Chicago to Los Angeles, and then got on another commuter train to ride down the coast to San Diego. The scenery for most of the trip was stunning, and there were ocean waves for the last bit! During the rides, I spent a couple of days listening to music and reading. I started and finished Graham Joyce's novel The Silent Land on the way. It's a beautiful book. At a ski resort, there's an avalanche, and the two main characters are caught in it. When they manage to get back to the resort village, no one else is there. Joyce does an amazing job of keeping the story interesting and vivid; I recommend it.
When I got to the convention hotel, my social life went nuts, as it always does at these things. I'm afraid to try to list all of the names of the people I spent time with, not to mention all of the other people I met in passing, so I do not promise to mention everyone and if you're one of the people I don't mention, please know that I cherish you anyway. I navigated my way through the lush and strange layout of the Town and Country Resort and dropped things off in my room, and then navigated my way through it again to find some friends for lunch. By "lush," I mean that the landscaping in that place was almost visibly growing larger from one second to the next, and you could hardly see around all of the vivid green leafery and bright bright flowers, and there was the occasional disorientingly odd smell, as if things had been planted that really weren't meant to be smelled in such numbers. By "strange," I mean that the buildings were kind of old but not old enough to be, you know, desirable, and I suspect that their design was not even considered the height of good taste at the time when they were new, and also there was no direct route to anything, so really I was forging a new path almost every time I went anywhere, except when I would sometimes accidentally find myself in a familar setting for reasons I could not then and cannot now explain.
But I made it to the bar for lunch! And had good times with Ferrett Steinmetz, Amy Sundberg, Kater Cheek, Andy Romine, Vylar Kaftan, and Vy's fella whose name I learned once but must one day learn again.
And hey! Time's up. Since I really need to get on this blogging thing as opposed to the not blogging, I'm just going to post this right here and now and return to the timeline next time.