I am back in New York after a whirlwind and fun trip to Leviosa in Las Vegas. As always with HP events, the best part was meeting old and new friends. The second-best part was hearing fascinating HP panels and enjoying the vendors' rooms.
Worst part -- well, actually, it was mostly a smooth and pleasant trip, so there was no real "worst." But. . .I don't actually like Las Vegas, I never really understand the casino games, and my eyes and throat only just now recovering from the fact that the casino (which was very close to the open-plan cafe and the conference area) allows unrestricted indoor smoking. (I hadn't realized this; so many public spaces in the US are smoke-free that I honestly didn't know that in some places, you can still find yourself engulfed in inescapable cigarette smoke. Allergic much?)
But those negatives were pretty minor. Here are just a few of the good things:Wonderful People I Met in Person for the First Timealisanneamoretteannietalbotdementordeltafemmequixoticlilyeyesmywitchnoeonteddyradiatorwritcraft
*waves*Wonderful People I've Met in Person Before and Got to Reconnect Withakatnamedeasterdrinkingcocoavaysh
*waves some more*
If I've left you off, my apologies!
I had to take my introverted, shy self in hand and risk barging up to people and saying, "excuse me, but are you . . ?" Actually, it wasn't much of a risk, because everyone was very kind and welcoming. (Thank you so much! I felt so at home with you all.)
I sat with Alisanne, Dementor Delta, and Lilyeyes at the Welcoming Feast and spent the costume ball with Mywitch, Kat, and Teddy, where we were eventually joined by Vaysh, Writ, and Amorette. I wore my full McGonagall drag and had a blast. (Although my home-made costume was nothing compared to some of the glorious outfits of the real cos-players. Professional-level wigs, make-up, and dress brought us fantastic versions of Snape, Umbridge, Hagrid, McGonagall, the Grey Lady, Not-Actually-Headless Nick, and more. Dolores Umbridge -- in full pink character -- actually came to the talk that Writcraft and I gave.)
Then I crashed the lovely and hospitable Snarry Suite, where I was welcomed despite the fact that I have never written a word of Snarry (though I have certainly read a lot of excellent stuff). Interspersed with all this were drinks with Writ, drinks with Writ, Femme, Noeon, Amorette, drinks with Teddy, Kat, and Mywitch, late supper with same. (Writ and Kat, don't think I've forgotten that I owe you drinks! I'm looking forward to seeing again and buying my round.)
The hotel/convention center was huge and sprawling and comfortable and had a fairly subdued (by Vegas standards) old-California-mission-style decor. Since the temperatures hovered around 105 degrees F every day, I rarely ventured outside, but the pool area looked pretty. (Yeah, I know people say, "but it's the desert; it's dry heat." Maybe so, but 105 degrees is still pretty damned hot, dry or not. Better than 105 humid degrees, though, certainly).
My sole trip out happened courtesy of the delightful aabbey
, who's been my fine fandom friend for at least a dozen years now. *waves like mad* She had to be in Las Vegas for reasons unrelated to the con, so we had dinner together at the hotel, and then she proposed a drive along the Vegas Strip. It was a fun madhouse. The traffic was insane, but it's Vegas, so it was fine. It was great to catch up with you, dear.
I left early on the morning of the last con day, so I missed the final panels and the Leaving Feast, but I still managed to pack a huge amount of fun into my two-and-a-half days.
Oh, and swag. I got swag, namely -- two beautiful, full-color Snape art cards courtesy of Akatnamedeaster, fabulous "Snape Alphabet" buttons (all 26 of them!) from the generous Mywitch, and a copy of Drinking Cocoa's newly-published Snape book, which I can't wait to read. (And a promotional button, too.) Thank you, everyone!
I'll talk more about the panels and such in another post.