September 8th, 2010

sundance_by_weasely

Of German hotels and their strange inhabitants.

EF was enough of a gigantic blast that I almost don't mind my car woes and the ensuing serious budget dent all that much.

This is good. I needed a gigantic blast in my life.

I did a hell of a lotta stuff and still there wasn't time to do all I wanted. This is a good thing: it leaves you with both a sense of fulfillment and a great want for more.

Anyway! Highlights, with nice lined up bullets for easier processing by the beer-addled mind:
  • The new venue in Magdeburg had the difficult task of coming after the beloved Ringberg hotel in Suhl. It sort of pulled it off, mostly thanks to midtown location, overall poshness, and large function space. Also the EF staff did absolute wonders with the decoration, with huge, beautiful banners hanging in the huge hotel hall.
  • The hotel hall was a public space. That meant passing Muggles. The look on their faces was precious.
  • I loved watching the staff of the hotel, but also of the surrounding mall restaurants and shops, go from cautiously reserved to warm and enthusiastic in a matter of days. Reportedly, by the end of the con, waiters at nearby wurst places were asking attendees what their species was. This makes me absurdly happy.
  • Food in Germany is just ridiculously cheap. Even in the hotel -- which was twice as expensive as any of the many food joints within a 5 minute walk -- it compared very favorably to my daily eatings in Paris. I freaking love Germany.
  • Consequently, absurd amounts of beer were had. Not the lonely, guilty sort, either: for the most part it was all about offering drinks to people I knew (or didn't know so well). I managed to pay off an old honor debt with one of the EF staff members, who had been incredibly nice with me during my first EF all those years back, and whom I'd never properly thanked.
  • Even when no beer was involved, I got to spend some time with people I'm immensely fond of, and I got to make new friends. This alone made the trip worth it. I got to meet glashund  at last! And he is just as sweet and adorable as online. Thank you for letting me squeesh you, hon. ♥ I hope you had a good time with us!
  • The panels I attended were consistently good, sometimes outright great. I, uh, might have distinguished myself in the writing panels. I blame it on too much German beer. :)
  • Even the serious car-related news I received midway through the con ended up with a positive effect, though not right away. At first I was pretty down for a while: picture me, glumly standing in line for the art show auction results, waiting and brooding, brooding and waiting, without even knowing if I'd won anything because I'd only had time for two quick bids early into the con. I ended up pulling out my sketchbook, and in search of catharsis, but also as an official statement of Screw You, World, I drew an angry dragon (which turned out okay) while standing there in the line. It may not sound like much, but for me, this is big. I never draw in public, where people may watch. And judge. (Here, people watched, and offered praise and appreciation. This is the furry community in a nutshell: come for the porn, stay for the people.)
  • For that matter: EF is the place where the person before you in the line is not an obstacle between you and your goal, but a nice guy to be befriended. Contrasted with my daily commute to Paris, that's incredibly therapeutic.
  • And both my bids won: this piece, and this one. What the hell, people. That's one of Shinnie's most beautiful pieces. You were supposed to bid to death on it!
And I guess that's it. I came home pretty knackered, not having slept a lot. (I seem to wake up at 8am no matter when I went to bed. This makes me feel frighteningly daddy-like.)

And now, after two days worth of car wrangling, it's back to the daily grind. I don't know yet how well I'll deal, but at least I've still got a few last specks of fairy dust sparkling in the back of my mind.