So this was my third Gally, and unfortunately for me, probably my worst. I wasn’t as prepared as I usually am. I went in thinking I was an old pro and that I could wing it. That was SO not the case. Probably the best thing was that I spent less money this year than last and that was me really budgeting for parking, food, and finally taking advantage of the hospitality suite. Seriously, if you have kids or teenagers that are begging you for food, you don’t need to shell out tons of money, you can make them wait for a meal and tell them to go downstairs and get some snacks and water. Oh if I’d only done that last year when I had two young people with me! Since I’m a local I also had the advantage of bringing a small cooler with us to our hotel with more snacks, sandwiches, water, and such.
What preoccupied me this year was Valentine’s Day. Last year the con was a few days after and this year it was during but I have two kids that needed me to bring stuff to their schools (brownie roll-out cookies) on Thursday and I wanted to bake my husband his favorite cake before I left. You know, the Valentine’s Cake that I also made him for his birthday, not the least complicated of cakes and not one that keeps well (whipped cream & strawberries). So you can imagine my dismay that he hadn’t even had a bite of it till after we got home. I was really bummed because instead of making his cake Thursday I could have finished my daughter’s cosplay of Doctor Whooves which I didn’t finish till Saturday morning in our hotel room. It’s okay, he brought my niece over and she, my kid and I finished half of it before it went all bad. The hubs did get a slice but just one.
Friday we took our pictures. That was another reason I had some spending money left over. This year I prepurchased our pictures and that made a big difference. I never got my email from Froggy’s Photos so I did have to stand in the messed up line on Friday with my receipt to get my photo cards but I didn’t mind. It was the one hiccup in an otherwise superbly run con and swiftly dealt with. Mostly we just walked around on Friday trying to find our stickers for our program books. These yearly program book games are where my kid excels and its definitely something we like to do together at the con. We took our pictures with Arthur Darvill and Paul McGann which was one of the highlights for us. We also got Arthur Darvill’s autograph on Friday where the only things we asked were what is favorite Once song was to sing and what was his favorite football club. His answers were “Gold” and Aston Villa respectively, just in case you were wondering.
I just really didn’t look at the programming beforehand and raising the subject of walking into a panel that didn’t interest the preteen just elicits the sigh of all sighs and that look of What am I gonna do? mixed with Do I have to go with you? So mostly we just hung out and looked around. Which isn’t to say that we didn’t have the best time doing that and there’s so much of that to do there that you’d never be bored, but I missed the differing insights into a show that I love and that I always get with a good panel. We did hit a few panels in the big room though and I loved every minute of it. Friday we went to the Travels with the Doctor panel which had bunches of people in it including Arthur and Billie Piper and quite a good one. It was very nice to see some of my favorite classic Doctor companions and even though I really haven’t watched much classic who, I still have a few favorites. After that we left to go back to our hotel for a bit to rest and eat. We had such a good time last year on Friday night and we were hoping to have the same kinda fun this year. Well, she did. Once we got back I realized the programming I wanted to go to was probably not for her. She wasn’t comfortable playing poker even though she could because there was no money involved so we went upstairs to a room we had been eyeing all day, the Hub. It was quite the game room with board games, card games, puzzle games and greatness. I just happened to look at the “Extra Programming” for Friday and they were going to start a game of Werewolves of Millers Hollow at 10pm. We both played the first time and she stayed to play a second time. She had so much fun even though she didn’t get to do much (just a villager both times) but I think playing with Doctor Who fans around her own age helped her loosen up a bit. I played a smidge of poker during her second game of Werewolf but to no avail. I didn’t get more than a few tickets to enter into a raffle and made it back upstairs before her second game was over. We left after that so I could work on her costume and hopefully get some sleep.