Phew, we got here.
Mind you the problems didn't start until after we arrived in Melbourne.
We were on a tight schedule - met up with iwoolf
(who was on an earlier flight - unfortunately with Tiger) and Mark (no lj) and alanbaxter
who were on our flight.
The flight was uneventful - murasaki_1966
and I played Carcassone on the iPhone - which worked well as a travel game.
Our arrival in Melbourne was uneventful (bit of a wait for our second suitcase, but nothing traumatising.) Ran into my friends Cyberkev and Ann from Brisbane (the day was very much like that once we had arrived at Sydney Airport)
And then we went to the Medina Apartments, where we had stayed a couple of years ago when we saw Ian McKellen in King Lear. It was a good location close to the Melbourne Convention Centre - and therefore Worldcon. We were looking forward to dumping our bags and heading off to the launch of gillpolack 's anthology Baggage and on to Worldcon.
Who knew there were two Medina Apartments in Flinders Street?
The one we had stayed at last time (close to the con) and the one we had actually booked ourselves into (between Russell and Exhibition Sts - not close to the con.)
So we missed the Baggage launch - made it to the registration desk (only to find my name - quelle surprise - misspelt on my badge.) Got that corrected, made it to the opening ceremony and on to the first panel (meeting up with ferkster
in the process) on Humour in SF
(from left to right: Tee Morris, Howard Taylor and Richard Harland)
A highlight was Howard Taylor's line that "steampunk is what happened when goths discovered the colour brown".
A short stint in the Dealers Room where an initial, tentative purchase from the ubiquitous Justin Ackroyd revealed that I had left my debit card at home. I still had a credit card - I was still able to pay for the books (Halting State
by Charles Stross and Just Behind You
by Ramsay Campbell) but I would not be able get cash out whilst I was in Melbourne.
Fortunately I was intending to stay close to murasaki_1966
during Worldcon anyway.
I met up with kylaw
and we attended a panel on the Necronomicon, with a wonderful presentation by Leigh Blackmore (ending in Cthulhoid dildos!) and informed commentary from Talie Helene (who told us there are two types of death metal bands - crazy and vegans) and Danny Lovecraft, and uninformed commentary from chuckmck1
(from left: Talie Helene - turning away from the camera, Danny Lovecraft, the irrepressible Chuck McKenzie and Leigh Blackmore)
We managed to assemble a dinner posse (including ferkster
) and went in search of the fabled Automatic cafe.
Which we found after much back tracking (it was right next to Crown Casino, but we couldn't see the name of it from the promenade side. We were halfway to the Arts Centre before murasaki_1966
checked the address on the iphone.)
Food was consumed and bodies were wearied - so we dragged ourselves back to our (distant) apartment, where I typed up this chronicle of events.
And that was the story of Worldcon Day 1.
Stay tuned for Day 2 where your humble scribe has his first panel. Can he get through it without losing his laptop, breaking a lectern, spontaneously combusting or inciting a riot?