Yesterday I got back from Georgia, where as per usual I visited Jamie and Nemoid. Georgia is my default road trip. I have people I love there, it's relatively close by, and I always enjoy myself.
In that respect, this trip wasn't any different. So many things are the same from visit to visit, only changing a bit in the details. Jamie got a new freezer since I last saw her. The garden's bigger. Karen has a new car, and her children have reached new developmental milestones. Jamie, the s.o. and I trade stories about plants, wildlife, food and soil. Karen and I laugh about old times and catch up on the new ones.
It was just as perfect as it always is.
BUT! The overarching theme this weekend was not one of calm and expected happenings. Nope. It was a weekend of firsts. First time I've been stuck in traffic so bad that we turned the cars off entirely, going only two-ish miles over 1.5 hours. First time I've ever dropped my binoculars 8 feet onto a hardwood floor and knocked the optics out of alignment. First time I stepped with sandaled feet into a fire ant nest.
Sounds pretty sucky, that part. But it really wasn't that bad. I used the downtime in the car to clean it out, and the delay inspired me to let down my hair and buy cheap beer in cans in order to crack one open upon arrival, before I'd even opened the trunk. The binoculars miraculously fixed themselves over the course of two days. Right after the crash I had double vision through the eyepieces, but when I looked through them as I was leaving, the images had become one. I felt a certain pride at finally having succumbed to and survived fire ants.
Fire ant bites are rite of passage for southerners, don't you think? I only ended up with about 20 bites, thanks to multiple factors--not least being Jamie's s.o.'s quick reaction as I ran into the house shrieking "FIRE ANTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" Thanks for that, s.o.!
Welp, I'm making a short story long, again. Ah well.
The biggest first of all was on Saturday. See, when I asked my Georgia friends if they were going to be in town, Jamie encouraged me to come on down, with the caveat that she had plans in Atlanta for part of the weekend that I was more than welcome to tag along to.
That's how I found myself at a multigenre convention. Oh yes. Not *just* Trekkies. Not just comic-book collectors. Not just Dungeons and Dragons LARPs . Furries. Anime. Fairies. Wizards. You name it.
Fandoms of every sort wended their way around and through the three adjacent hotels that hosted DragonCon this weekend.
Here are my reactions, in brief:
- Everyone's either naked or overdressed.
- Hm. There are a lot of good-looking people here. That doesn't fit into my head.
- Am I supposed to recognize the characters people have dressed up as?
- Why would anyone go for a full-body plush or rubber suit in Atlanta in the summer?
- You know, that guy's creepy. So's that girl.
- Who has this kind of *money* to spend?
- The health department needs to have a table here with condoms.
- I wonder what all those Clemson and Alabama fans are thinking right about now?
- Does not compute
- A lot of people seem to be either fainting or puking in here right now. Not me! Cookies please!
- Most women's costumes rely on a corset, it looks like.
- Bad corsetry signals: breasts pushed so high they fold over on themselves. VCL under spandex.
- The Utilikilt to corset ratio is 1:1 (Holy CRAP that Utilikilt video's wrong!)
- I lack the background to understand any of the concurrent sessions here.
- Poor kids in their strollers.
Check out the photos I took. Some of the costumes are obvious, but others left me entirely clueless.
BTW? Definitely worth the $50 entrance fee.
Edited to add:
I forgot another first!
I survived it! Basically imagine sweet taste combined with burnt hair/emerging BO. Unfortunately, I also ended up with Durian burps, which hold none of the sweet and all of the stench.