Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The GenCon 2012 Chronicles: Chapter 1

I'm planning on writing up some blog posts based on my experiences at GenCon.  First off, overall the whole experience felt like something of a time warp.  The week passed by very quickly, probably due to all of the fun that I was having!  I will probably divide up each 'chapter' into being one or two days.  The first two days are probably going to be pretty boring because I was traveling during those times.

13 August 2012

It started out simple.  I started packing.  I had some anxiety and had some difficulty sleeping.

14 August 2012

Spent the morning finalizing my packing and playing Guild Wars (quite an enjoyable way to spend a morning).  Around noon, I was off on my way to the airport.  The drive was really smooth.  The first 'hiccup' of the journey was that I nearly forgot my Gencon badge and tickets!  I was just pulling out onto the road out of my neighborhood so it didn't cost me very much time.

The second hiccup was far more entertaining for me.  I parked at Diamond Rental parking in Salt Lake City. (I had a Groupon, otherwise it would have been way too expensive).  Needless to say, I was rather pleased with the service.  I parked in their lot and a shuttle bus came and picked me up.  The driver was friendly and helped me load up my suit case.  They also had free water bottles!  I thought that was the most awesome thing in the world and thought I would enjoy my water bottle on the flight in.

I couldn't have been more wrong.

After I got through the security scanning, one of the TSA agents asked if the black laptop bag was mine.  I said it was.  That's when I learned that I had done two things wrong.  First, I had attempted to get through the checkpoint with a water bottle (I thought that was a bit ridiculous).  Second, apparently laptops need to be scanned separately.  I went ahead and removed my laptop and the TSA agent took my water away.

Water bottle, I barely knew thee.  I didn't even get a chance to name thee!

That aside, the first flight in was highly pleasant.  When I got on the plane, the person sitting next to me had already boarded. He said he was glad to see me because I wasn't a really big person.  I then joked that I was 'travel sized'.  Turns out that he was also LDS and had grown up in the same place that I had.  Sadly, he left before I could thank him for the pleasant flight experience.

Mike...Dave...whoever you were.  I barely knew thee!

I don't remember much of the second flight.  I think I was stuck between two other people.  The flight was really short.  I barely had time to get bored.

Two of my friends from Wisconsin came and picked me up from the airport.  It was nice to actually meet the two people in person!  The drive to their home was kind of long.  (They lived a few hours from where I flew into).  The drive was pleasant but I felt exhausted.  I thought I would sleep just fine.

Turns out that I was wrong.  Once we had arrived and settled in, I found I had a case of insomnia.  I ended up staying up till 4 in the morning (their time) before I was able to finally fall asleep.  We were up two hours later so that we could catch the bus.

15 August 2012

We were to the place where the bus would pick us up early.  The bus ride was largely uneventful.  I tried to do some reading and resist cringing from one of the movies that was playing.  It was called 'Gamers: The Fellows Hip'.  It was like a sad fan fiction/modern version of Lord of the Rings.  I was feeling a bit cranky by the time we arrived in Indianapolis, mostly because a lot of the people on the bus were talking very loudly.  I had a hard time concentrating on my book!
Bus pictures! (The store is 'Gnome Games', they arranged the shuttle bus and hotel rooms for us! It was awesome!)
Wisconsin is really green!

We finally arrived at the hotel and I took a look at the 'swag bag' that Gnome Games gave us.  Apparently Gencon used to do a swag bag, but it quickly devolved into the various vendors handing out papers to redeem at the vendor booths.  The bag had a number of tasty treats, but arguably my favorite item was the roll up blanket thing.  I promptly decided to wrap it around my head.  A friend of mine took a picture and said I was practicing my 'derka-derka'...whatever that is.

No trip is complete without my trusty laptop!
My friends and I then walked over to a nearby waffle house to enjoy some tasty food.  Here's some pictures:
Yep, it was pretty tasty! First time for me having grits too!
Waffle House!

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