So trying to do both my RF and my AFC write-ups in this post, because I hadn't gotten to RF yet.
Rainfurrest continues to be one of my favorite conventions. Its just the right size, the people are fantastic, and the food is always stellar (okay, okay maybe thats just that Seattle has good food and I've found some real gems but FOOD man. That stuff is important.) So this year I flew in on Thursday, and the wonderful, noble, heroic, Davecko *grinz* helped me haul my luggage from the airport to the hotel... I'm stubborn and probably would have tried to haul it all over there myself otherwise, which probably wouldn't have ended terribly well ><. I need to learn from this, and know that if someone can't help me next year, I need to call a cab. After weighing all my luggage I realize that it outstrips my own weight by, well, quite a bit. In any case, he helped me get my luggage over to the con, I setup, and then went to dinner with that awesome fellow and his friends, and I am in fact AWFUL with names... so... I'm sorry for not calling you all out individually *sorrrrry*. (Also, I got furry and real names and that just means I am twice as likely to forget)
Con went great for the next few days, pretty productive and I limited my commissions so ended up being able to do a good amount of socializing every evening, which was lovely! Hung out with the ever awesome, Kit, Kyell, Kenket, Teagan, FoxAmoore, Vantid, Xyk, Davecko, Jack, Path, and more... again, horrid with remembering names so if I forgot yours, my most sincere apologies, you know you are loved, and appreciated, and that my mental filing system is just horrid.
After the Con I spent a couple days just outside of Seattle proper with a friend who I hadn't seen in a few years, which was lovely. Had the best sushi I've had in my life, saw harbor seals, and sea lions, and wandered about Seattle a bit, but mostly hung out with her, (introduced her to Doctor Who, because thats what I do) and caught up on all of our crazy life gossip.
Then I came home for 2 days, and my dad got into town, so I promptly went up to Frisco with him and his girlfriend. Unfortunately, due to Frontier Airlines horrid screwups, he got here 8 hours late, so I only got 2 days with him, but we had a lovely time. Did a few light hikes, wandered around cute little mountain towns, and generally enjoyed each others company.
Two days after that I started my road trip to AFC with my dear friend Liz. First day was just a pounding of road beneath our wheels. Fourteen hours of driving later (all me, she doesn't drive stick) we hit the hotel, punch drunk and still silly happy with each other. Met with the guest liaison Arielle (who is a wonderful human being and was terribly helpful all weekend), got shown our room and around the hotel, setup in the dealers room and then settled in for what was to be a gorgeous weekend. The weather was a bit hot for my tastes, but then I'm spoiled by Colorado. The view was exquisite though, looking out over a golf course with the mountains behind that and the huge dark desert sky above us. This con is the first (to my knowledge) to give dealers a lunch break, which just made it that much more awesome in my book. The fact that we, as dealers and guests, could retreat for an hour or two to our rooms. Collect our thoughts, and recharge afternoon was invaluable. I absolutely loved that!
I continued my tradition from Rainfurrest and strictly limited conventions to allow for socialization, and it worked out so well. I actually had a chance to enjoy my evenings with my friends. Hung out with such wonderful people as Myenia, Rukis, Liz, Fuzzwolf, Teiran, and more.
On our way back we didn't do the crazy long haul of the first trip. Stopped for a picnic lunch detour at an offshoot of the Grand Canyon (didn't got to the Canyon proper, b/c it was quite a bit further, but even our little offshoot was glorious). We had gotten a rather late start, but made it to Moab by evening, where we found a place to pitch a tent (ended up in an RV park which isn't as nice as proper campgrounds but DID have a hot tub, so bonus points). The next morning we had adventures in Arches National Park. We were up and out by 8 and got to Arches by 9:30 or so and it was everything I could have wished for. Liz and I both hoped to go there to get a good solid center spiritually (yes, sounds flaky but having that quiet outdoor time is important to both of us, and our lives have been pretty tumultuous recently so it was soothing to our souls to just sit and enjoy that exquisite piece of nature). Luckily the day before our arrival Utah opened its national parks with state funds, so we were able to make it in, and there were hardly any people there. Only about 12 of us or so at Delicate Arch, and we had lots of time to just sit quietly, to enjoy, to take it all in. We picnicked at the 'Windows' area, and then started our stuttered trip back home. That night was spent with Liz's family in Grand Junction, and the next morning puttered our way from a diner, to a winery, through Georgetown to one of our favorite restaurants in Colorado, then back home.
So I've been home for a couple days now and am about to leave again (Wednesday) for another week. I'll sure be glad to be home for a while after this next trip, and am hoping I will be, but I just got news that my grandmother is in rather poor health, so I may be making a trip to Philly to see her. *urf*
I have a whole 'nother post I want to write later about centering and such but thats for later, I think this is more than enough for now.