We landed at a Fairfield Inn in Lima that had remarkably soft beds. If this didn't have something to do with Erica's back problems of the day, I'd be surprised. But we managed to get up and out on time and head over to Ada for the walkthrough. I'd brought my video camera to take footage to show to daisy_knotwise and to send off to Erica's parents to take a look at. There were no problems at the walkthrough, which came complete with the really cute kids of the then-current owners, one of whom wanted me to watch her climb the apple tree and swing on her swing and... :)
But it's a lovely house. We drove back over to Lima for the closing, which was slightly delayed, but didn't seem to have any major problems. It's interesting though that the two sides in the closing weren't all around the table at once like they've been in the closings up in Chicago that I've been part of. On the other hand, we also get possession at closing up here too, so I guess it's different customs in different regions.
While Erica was closing, I updated the Dodeka inventory list for the con; then decided to go out into the lovely day we were having, pull out my guitar and noodle around a bit. This included working out the transition between "Archetype Cafe" and "Wild Rover" for the parody that I'd dreamed that beamjockey was singing the previous night. Now if I could just remember the words... :)
We figured we'd get lunch down the road and we did, although the road ended up going all the way to Dublin where we grabbed lunch at the Max and Erma's near the OVFF hotel. Then it was off to the Hyatt Regency Columbus to unload, park, and set up the table. In an unusual development, we found that the table was all set up before the room opened, probably because we got there around 3 PM instead of when we would usually get there driving in from Chicago.
I'd gotten the call from ladyat on Thursday night asking me to check on the then rumors about Bob Asprin, so I knew some of what we were likely to be going into. I would have gone to the DI theme circle in Bob's honor that evening, but the dealers' room didn't close until 9 PM, which was when Steve and Dorotha's concert was starting. Erica and I both wanted to hear that and really needed to get dinner subsequently, so we didn't get to the filk until the wake section was over. But I tend to believe that it's more important to honor my living friends, all things being equal, and I'm pretty sure the wake managed just fine without me.
I sang one song, "Imagination Rising", and backed up Erica on "Ruins" before we decided that we needed to crash out so that we'd be coherent when the dealers' room opened on Saturday. It was a big circle and there were a lot of nice things being done.
I had a chance to chat briefly with Alex before the room opened. He was wondering about "Bold Marauder", which I've been known to sing in the past, but didn't have in the filk book right now. He's interested in covering it some time, so I checked the copyright info on Wulf's recording of it and passed the info along. This led into a brief discussion of parody law as currently embodied in the Acuff-Rose v. 2 Live Crew decision which is basically insane, but what we've got to work with for the moment.
Having discovered that the Far Light concert was at 1 PM, we decided that we could just close down the table and both go listen to it. This was a good decision, I suspect, as most of the folks who might have been buying from us were probably also there. It was wonderful to listen to. min0taur looked happy enough to burst.
After the room closed, we ducked down to the food court and had dinner with huskiebear and filkertom. I was still working through a malt when Erica decided to go on up and try to stretch out her back. I headed that way a bit later and we chatted until it was time to go down to the fantasy theme circle.
Alex started it off, then passed it off clockwise in what turned out to be a bardic circle of ginormous size. Erica didn't have anything cued up right then, so she tossed it to me and happily sang backing vocals for "Crystal Dance". It took about 90 minutes to get around the room and back to Alex, with most of the songs actually having some fantasy-type content. :) Erica and I were sharing my guitar -- hers is essentially identical to mine and having to schlep only a single guitar around is convenient -- and I'd passed it over to her when she'd picked out something suitable for the circle.
It was, sadly, at this moment that the whole bardic circle thing broke down completely and Erica's turn vanished into the ether. *sigh* She decided to find something else to do shortly thereafter. I decided to hang around for a bit, getting to hear Barry and Sally do "Small Designs" (which is always worth the price of admission), but after my cellphone rang as I made my way back into the room following a bathroom break (where I'd run into Travis, who had heard the parody discussion in the dealers' room earlier and stopped to congratulate me on actually understanding what it says), I figured I was about done too and wandered up to the room, where I noodled around on the guitar and watched the baseball scores on ESPN News. (The latter wouldn't have been nearly so irritating if they'd actually showed the Cardinals highlights instead of showing the same games involving the Yankees and the Red Sox three times.)
We packed up and got out of the room in good time, although we had to catch an elevator going up in order to get down. This is par for the course on Sundays at Marcon. But we were out early enough that we managed to get lunch before the dealers' room opened, which was good, given the flurry of folks who showed up. There was much good conversation (as there had been all weekend), which is one of the advantages of being at the table. I also had the two autographed "Dream of a Far Light" CDs that tollers had gifted me and Gretchen with on behalf of the band the night before, which meant that I knew what I'd be listening to on the way home. :) Leslie dropped by to chat for a while, which was fun, as did Sally, Debbie, and harperjen (who, when we were discussing Erica's and my upcoming albums, noted "I've got a harp!" Yay!)
Eventually, the room closed. We got packed up and out in record time, thanks to the fine crew working the dealers' room, and hit the road by 4:30 PM local. This meant that we were able to get to Shapiro's for dinner, which was also a fine thing. Urp. I grabbed a slice of German chocolate cake for Gretchen's later consumption.
It's a pretty long drive, but the conversation and the music were good. We pulled in around 10:30 PM Chicago time and I reacquainted myself with the kids. Katie was snubbing me in favor of Mom's cake, but...
I put on the tape of Erica's new house for Gretchen to watch. She was quite pleased with it, but we noticed that Erica had stopped watching it. "Motion sickness," she replied when asked. It was about that time that I noticed I was sweating profusely and nauseated. *sigh* Apparently, deciding not to go see "The Blair Witch Project" was a really good choice on my part, given my reaction to less than half-an-hour of shaky hand-held video. But "The Blair House Project" had at least accomplished part of its mission.
We slept in the next morning. We needed it. :)
But we eventually grabbed lunch, made DVDs of "The Blair House Project" for Erica and her parents, chatted, and had a good time until I needed to run Erica down to the station to catch her train back to Champaign. Later, Gretchen and I went over to Sweet Baby Ray's for dinner, where Katie got to wield her own spoon in pursuit of our shared key lime pie that we had for dessert. Most of it got into her, which is good, because otherwise it would have been a terrible waste of key lime pie.
It was a good con, largely due to the company of Erica and all of my friends at the con. And it was good that we didn't try to take Katie and Julie with us, because the amount of chaos that would have ensued would have been spectacular, even if it did leave me missing Gretchen and the kids.
We'll field test the configuration that includes the (now multiple) kids at DucKon. That way, if there's a problem, they can go home with Mom! :)