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[personal profile] hathycol
Oh, you guys, you guys, I have been so busy recently and there is no sign of it letting up. I can’t even complain about it really; oh dear, poor me, I have been so busy seeing FRIENDS and SOCIALISING and HAVING FUN but it’s all surrounded by doing full weeks at work. To put this into context, I get up, go to work, come home, make/eat dinner, clean up and whatever and by that time it’s 8pm and I can’t force out an LJ post. So I will update soon with more stuff!

However, last weekend I went to LFCC and come hell, high water, or having to write the draft on the work PC on a quiet afternoon (if anyone comes over to look I have an extremely convincing looking policy open in another window) I will always do my con write up. So!

Friday afternoon was horrendously busy in work. I knew I had Lucy and Tali coming to stay and the morning was slow, the type where I got through my workload and was all prepared to stroll out at 5.27pm. The afternoon was full of niggly things that absolutely had to be done then, but it was okay! Because Richie would be at home and Lucy and Tali would go THERE and everything would be fine.

At 5.27pm my boss asked me to do a system change. At the same time, I got texts from Richie saying he was running late. All was woe and pain. I refused to make the changes and flung myself out of the door and did the world’s most efficient Friday night Tesco run on the way home from work. Luckily all was well and they were all at home when I arrived. Yay!

That evening we ate a mountain of pasta and sat around the kitchen table, drinking wine and catching up. I do so love having friends around in the safe knowledge I’ve fed them! However, we couldn’t have TOO late a night, as we were planning on getting up at 5.45am. CONVENTIONS!

We hauled ourselves up early and crept around the flat, making tea, ironing Trek dresses (that is how I roll) and flinging ourselves out of the house in time to make it to Kensington Olympia, which is at the wrong side of London for me. Particularly when I’m wearing a gold Trek dress…

Still, we made it with minimal disruption. One of my favourite bits of travelling to conventions is that glorious moment where you start falling over people with geeky t-shirts, poster tubes and cosplayers. Sure, I think the people at Victoria station were confused but when are they not?

The last few years have been barely controlled chaos at LFCC, so it was lovely to see that improvements have been made. We were clearly directed to where we needed to queue (indoors!) and waited patiently, eyeing up fellow cosplayers (my favourites were a Matt Fraction Hawkeye and a Squirrel Girl) and failing to ever properly be able to watch the trailers they were showing on a screen in the corner of the room. As all tickets were sorted on the way into the queue when the doors actually opened we were all just able to stream in, which made for a frankly lovely change! This year the event was spread out across all of Olympia, two large halls and several levels. We charged in and found ourselves on the second floor, where all of the guests were ensconced. None of us were after a lot of guests, and none of us were after the really big guests, which was helpful, but we grabbed our VQ tickets and promptly went for the worst organised breakfast ever. I mean. A 15 minute wait. For two teas. Not with milk, not speciality ones, literally just hot water and a bag. WHAT EVEN.

Still, at least we ate calmly. It was a theme of the weekend – no stressful crowds, really, just getting on with things. We then decided to go and find Paul McGann. Now, I’ve met him before and don’t remember it being this awesome (and in fact I accidentally put my hand up the back of his jacket in the photoshoot ARGH ARGH ARGH THE SHAME) so yep, he was definitely 100% flirting with Tali! Okay, and with everyone else in the queue. But still. Shh. It was lovely just to watch, I like it when guests are enthusiastic and chatty and being outraged that they once got a complaint they were holding the sonic screwdriver upside down.

Next to Paul McGann was Elden Hendon, who plays Foggy Nelson on Daredevil! He had pretty much no queue to my astonishment (to put into context, we were waiting for Paul McGann for about 45 minutes?) so we had a very brief conversation. Compared to Paul McGann it was brief but then that was the theme of the weekend…

On a bit of a Foggy Nelson kick, we ambled over to the talk stage and met up with Ann, Alex and David who were down for the day (although Ann did NOT bring her pug puppy NOT FAIR) and watched the talk given by Elden Hanson for the 100% sound reason that it was free. They were showing more trailers beforehand, where we started the weekend tradition of not watching the Star Trek Beyond trailer, despite best efforts…

Still, the talk was good! I also love that some of it has turned up on news channels as exclusives about The Defenders. I… did not realise that at the time. And also, in an LFCC first I was actually way too cold, being sat under the air conditioning. I think that’s what mostly caught my attention. Clearly I am a bad Marvel fangirl.

After that there was a well-deserved tea break, where we hung around and leaned over the gallery to marvel at the sheer range stalls and tat. We also spent a lot of time pondering what possessed the Morning Star newspaper to hire a stand, although their cosplay was strong; Red Son and Ivan Drago seemed to be the main theme. Apparently communist cosplay is a thing. WHO KNEW.

At this point we made a run for Michelle Gomez’s autograph but the queues were getting pretty intense, so we started an exploratory run of the tat shopping. I stopped a lot to get pictures of cosplayers, and looking through my photos I was definitely on a bit of an Awesome Female Hero kick. Ms Marvel! Hell yeah! Unfortunately the professional cosplay masquerade was less good; the actual costumes were amazing (a wonderful Baymax and a couple of Pirates of the Caribbean ones) but the MC was terrible. We ended up making a run for it. But that was okay! Because then we met Michelle Gomez! Who was WONDERFUL. She was wearing cat ears and was super friendly and smiley! Due to the queue I didn’t want to be That Person who was chatting for too long but we had a very brief exchange about Psychobitches which she seemed pleased about. So yay!

We had then been conventioning for a Very Long Time indeed, so we waved farewell to Ann and co. before ambling back into central London, strolling through Soho in Trek dresses. As one does. One earlier dinner later (and you have never seen three people so eagerly down pints of water, let me tell you) we ended up back at the flat and had another giggly and fun night. I had a glorious moment where I realised I was sad because the con was over, but no, it was on for another day!

We gave ourselves a lie in on A WHOLE HOUR on Sunday. Marvellous. On the way we discussed getting song lyrics wrong; for years now I've thought a Taylor Swift lyric involved the phrase 'see the lights, see the party toboggan' which even as I type it I know sounds odd but that's what I heard! This led to confusion over a misplaced comma in the Wombles, along the lines of "... Wimbledon, common are we!" So obviously the common Womble is womblus womblus which indicates there was uncommon Wombles, like womblus Rex who has tiny arms and gets cross because he can't reach the litter...

It was early, it what I am saying. But still, an hour lie in felt like a treat. As none of us were joining the VQ scrum that day, we joined the queue a little later but once again strolled into the venue very easily. GOLD STAR FOR ORGANISATION SHOWMASTERS.

Sunday was our planned Day O' Tat, so after another restoring breakfast and tea we trundled our merry way through stalls. There was so much beautiful stuff I cannot even DESCRIBE guys. I was very controlled, all things considered. Although quite a lot of that had to do with the fact the cash machines had all run out of money... Still, I got hold of a t-shirt, a purse with the SHIELD logo on it (YEAH I'M THAT COOL also it's the first purse I've found that's actually the style I prefer for ages, given my old purse had holes in it) and a few other bits and bobs. Plus comics! I got talking to a guy on a stall after haranguing Lucy unto buying 'Bitch Planet' and given I was dressed as Jayne Cobb and we had talked about other female-led comic books he recommended a couple of bits, which I bought because I am easily persuadable when I'm in the mood to spend money. (Although the actual comic-book-artist bit of the con was not quite as good as I had hoped.)

Plus, again, just the amount of AIR and the sense that you're with your people, you know? It felt like a convention without any of the OH GOD SO MUCH PEOPLE and that was... well-deserved, I feel.

And then we went to the Three Doctors talk and lo it was AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING.

We actually started by squatting in Sean Maher's talk before scooting out and joining the queue. "I am a terrible Firefly cosplayer," I muttered to myself, Jayne's hat bobble gently waving under the air conditioning. Sean Maher seemed lovely but, you know, Doctor Who. I did take the time in the queue to get some photos of my cosplay, which I enjoyed if maybe no one else - feminist!femme!Jayne Cobb. Hat, t-shirt, but with short shorts. My body confidence in my legs at least is fairly high at the moment and a thigh holster really helps things. I also had a copy of a Caitlin Moran book to whip out for pictures. WELL I ENJOYED THE PUN.

The Three Doctors though! So marvellous. It was Paul McGann (who is really Scouse! Really, really Scouse! At one point he called someone 'lad' and talked about getting into a fight in a bar, oh how I love my people), Sylvestor McCoy (amazing) and Colin Baker (ditto). Although the talk was only a short one, and hardly one where we learnt anything new, it was just lovely to sit with my friends and my amazing fandom. Oh, Doctor Who, never change.

PLUS we finally got to see the Star Trek trailer afterwards, even though we got shouted at because they thought we were trying to sit in on another talk. 'I don't even know who that is!' did not work.

Alas, Lucy had to head off not too long after that BOOOO and missed out on Dominic Monaghan! Because, well, his queue was manageable and who am I to avoid a hobbit? The lady at his desk gave me a rather quiet 'Shiny!' when she saw me, whereas his response was to glance at me, pause, look again, and ask if I was hot in that hat. "Yep," I responded with a grin.

"Are you... it is a part of a costume, right?"

I laughed nervously as the woman explained and then at least I looked a bit less like I was wearing a bobble hat and short shorts in the middle of summer for funsies. So that's something. I have now met the two best hobbits (Sam and Merry, obviously) so there's an ambition 17 year old me is very pleased to have met!

Lucy having gone also meant she missed out on Tali and Colleen's Epic Quest For Wall Art. You see, the stalls were all spread out over two very large halls and there were no maps as to who was where. We had spotted some beautiful fake travel posters for the solar system ("ski on Pluto!" sort of thing) and Tali had mulled over them for a while. We decided to try and buy them. I am convinced we saw every stall in that event. Every. Stall. Actually I'm convinced it was a magic stall and moved around just to mess with us. But we found them in the end and it was totally worth it ad she got three for £25 and they are stunningly beautiful! But oh, we were glad to sit down after that. Not long later, we decided to make a move for homeward bound, waving goodbye to an actually well-organised LFCC, Jeremy Renner who we did not meet because he was £75 WHAT EVEN and a sadly deflating massive red CEX shark that hung over the cosplay stage.

It was a lovely weekend, all told. On Monday I was a tired and gibbering wreck in work and frankly am not much better now, but life goes on. I would say 'my feet have stopped hurting' but due to busy weekends I am running a LOT in the mornings before work and I did a 12km and now they hurt again, but I can't really blame LFCC for that.

I need to go to more conventions, I think. I have missed them. All my pictures are on facebook; I missed out on loads of awesome cosplayers, like a lovely Supergirl, a fab Jesse and Cassidy from Preacher (a side note: Richie and I are trialling Amazon Prime and have inhaled Preacher in a fortnight. It was awesome and oh TULIP YOU ARE BEST) and generally just wonderful awesome people.

But now: onwards! And I will definitely write up the rest of my Very Busy July soon!
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