Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Last of LokiCon - For Now

So this will be the last word on LokiCon (at least for this year)…and only because some of it needs to be said; just not this first part.

So a portion of my time on Sunday (before Dread) I spent gathering up as much as I could get packed and put in the car as possible. I had originally intended to leave in the early afternoon…but given the ride down to GA, I adjust my schedule, deciding to leave early in the morning. I didn’t want to wake the entire house Monday morning, so getting everything possible in the car would kill two birds…saving time and avoiding making noise.

So after Dread I said my goodbyes to the “Chalet People” - because I’d be gone before they returned on Monday morning – and hit the sack. I woke at about 4:30 in the morning. I tried to go back to sleep, but m mind kept running through the list of things that remained to be collected and worrying about my vehicle’s ability to get me home.

Finally I just said, “Screw it!” and got up, packed the car, and left. I was pretty confident I would be jacked up on worry-adrenaline and my suspicions were realized. Though I have to say, I had also convinced myself that the trip down the mountain was no longer my biggest challenge. No, it was the first jaunt up a significant incline near the infamous black gates, and then the winding, vertically-challenging road to Clayton with little transmission fluid.

All the drama was, fortunately, for naught. The Ford made it over the river and through the woods without incident. I stopped at the gas station at which I had last stopped on the way into the hills and topped off the transmission and the oil and checked all of the other fluids. Soon I was making my way through North Carolina and fearing only the weather front predicted to move through the south/southeast.

And, ironically, it was the rain that was the most troublesome…the rain and the strong, swirling wind that accompanied that front. One of the reasons I left early was because I thought I had heard the rain when I first woke up. I did beat the rain out of Georgia and most of North Carolina – most notably, through the mountains. But the precipitation harried me from just outside of Knoxville until I passed through Lexington. This was a challenge because in the craziness of getting everything ready to get to LokiCon, I forgot to check the tread on my tires…and on my front-wheel drive minivan, the two front tires were essentially bald.

The GPS had me continuing on to Cincinnati, but I had my suspicions that heading west would get me beyond the storm…and the decision paid off. Fifteen minutes outside of Lexington, the weather broke, the road dried, and I was happily back on track. I didn't stop for food – I barely stopped for anything. I cranked the tunes, hit Chicago right around rush hour, got lucky with traffic, and made it home about 13 hours after quietly rolling down the mountain in Georgia.

OK…enough of the travel log. For heaven’s sake it’s been two weeks and I’m typing this from yet another road trip. But I wanted to wrap that up so I could really do the following:

Thank you.

Thank you to diaglo for being a great and gracious host, for allowing us to invade his newly built getaway, and for always being one of the nicest guys I've met through gaming.

Thank you to all the people who took the time to teach me new games like Liar’s Dice and Zombie Dice. The former I've played dozens of times since returning home – my kids love it. In fact, I “introduced” it to a group of nieces/nephews at one Thanksgiving dinner and just tonight to adults in my family after the second Thanksgiving celebration. And Zombie Dice will be purchased before Christmas.

Thank you to the great GM’s/Keeper’s who ran games in which I played – dshai for Mammoth Vikings, Keeper of Secrets for CoC, and Rodrigo for Dread. Your time and effort is greatly appreciated.

Thanks to all my gaming cohorts who made every game I played in a riot.

One of the reasons I go to GenCon and do something crazy like drive almost 800 miles to LokiCon is because I know the games will be top notch – it’s always like an All Star event and I feel privileged every time you let me play in your games.

Thanks to all the people who brought and cooked food. I brought some food and was happy to contribute, but I was spoiled by the cooking.

And finally, thanks to all of you who welcomed me into the fold and made a weekend of gaming into a weekend of friends and fun…and all of it worth every moment of the drive.

Thanks all…I hope to do it again some day.

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