Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The IMPire lives and I've got a wall of fire...

Well, I'm back from Spokane, WA (some of you may have heard me say "Tacoma, WA" -- I have no idea of why I confuse the two names, but they both have an "a" and an "o" with a hard C or K sound).

The trip up to the great northwestern United States was relatively uneventful. I flew from Houston to Phoenix, AZ for no reason other than that no other flights were available. Then jumped from Phoenix up to Spokane.

MERPCon II was a lot of fun. I haven't gamed in many years and the bizarre things I did during the sessions certainly proved that if ever I was a great gamer, I'm not one any more. But how can you attend a gamercon and not do a little a role-playing?

The group who stayed for my talk (which was mostly recorded and should see some exposure on the Internet eventually, along with Chris Seeman's talk from MERPCon I) were very supportive and asked some great questions.

Spokane is a very beautiful city, and the weather was quite pleasant. While the heat has been high in Houston, I've managed to stay in doors except for a few trips to and from the car. So I've missed out on the usual girl-watching guys like to do in the summer time. There were plenty of girls dressed for summer in Spokane. 'Nuff said.

The trip back was rather long and winding. I flew to Denver, but an airshow somewhere between Spokane and the rest of the universe shut down flights along one or more corridors for about half an hour. That was just long enough for me to arrive in Denver late. I had to rush from Concourse B to Concourse A before I could find a monitor with information about my connecting flight. The monitor said that flight was boarding at gate A-29. So I made the epic journey to gate A-29. Upon arriving at the gates of Mordor, I was told that the way was barred, and I needed to run to gate A-53 (literally, I had to go from one end of the concourse to the other end).

Didn't quite make it in time. And, no, they don't hold airplanes for world-famous Tolkien know-it-alls.

Time flies when you're grounded, and I wandered all over the Denver airport seeking help in my quest to return to Houston. Various customer service reps and ticketing agents suggested Monday flights ranging from 10:30 AM to 7:30 PM. Around 9:00 PM Denver time I bowed to the inevitable, accepted a discount coupon for a hotel room, and booked a Monday morning flight back to Houston.

In the morning, the hotel shuttle ran late....

Well, I got back, tired, sore, and obligated to show up to work to let my co-workers know I had not stopped breathing. They almost noticed I had been gone for the weekend....

Meanwhile, back at the email front, last week I boldly sent out an invitation to a couple dozen Compuserve IMPs for that collection of feature articles I've been wanting to write all year. So, while I was traveling, IMPs were writing back to me saying, "Michael who?"

It's been a blast to hear from so many old online friends, and to see how they are doing. I can't wait to get started on writing the articles. This should be a great project, although more research (questions) is still to come.

And I did slip into a ballroom dancing class last night, but I only stayed for one. My legs were killing me from all the time I had spent walking around the Denver airport, so I confirmed my schedule with Gloria for the next week or so and then bid her adieu for the evening.

And that's where things stand for now. There will be more to say later, I'm sure.


Post a Comment

<< Home