So I am safely home from MFF. It was a fun weekend, but a lot less fun than it could have been for me. The convention has just gotten too big. It started sometime last Spring when I learned that the Hyatt was already sold out, before I'd learned that the room block was open. So it was the first year that I've been in someone else's room, and because they didn't want to stay over Sunday night, I didn't either. We ended up in the Hyatt Thursday night and then at the Hilton Friday and Saturday, which meant (a) having to move hotels, (b) having to figure out where to park for Friday and Saturday, and (c) having the room very inconveniently far from the con.
We left town on Thursday at 4, picking up the fourth passenger at Parkland on the way out of town. The trip to the hotel was uneventful. I went to make myself a sandwich and discovered that I'd forgotten my mustard, which made my dinner much less appealing. I picked up my badge and signed up as a gopher. I went to the Art Show, thinking I would be helping to set up, to find that they were packing up for the evening. So I went back to ops and asked where I could help set up, and they sent me to Con Suite, where I did things for 15 minutes, and then spent most of the rest of an hour waiting for someone in charge to tell me what I needed to do, and then they said they were done for the evening. I decided I was through volunteering for the evening and went to the game room, where I played a couple of games of magic before they closed the room at midnight.
Friday, we managed to check in early at the Hilton, so we were able to move our stuff directly from one room to the other. We went to the Fashion Mall food court for lunch, and I snagged a handful of mustard packets from the pretzel stand (I bought some cinnamon pretzel bits, so I wasn't just mooching) so I could make edible sandwiches. I moved the car into the convention center parking across the driveway from the Hyatt parking. I hit the dealer's and got a couple of books and a couple of shirts. Went to the concert, which was headlined by Amadhia, backed up by Fox Amoore and Pepper Coyote. I liked the music, despite the make-your-ears-bleed volume which was not appropriate to their music. Other than that, I hung around in the game room a lot.
Saturday, I watched the fursuit parade, checked out the art show, which is shrinking in size and awesomeness even as the rest of the con grows -- it seems like art shows are just not working as ways for artists to reach their audience, even in the furry fandom where art is huge. I texted a few people about dinner but couldn't find any takers. Was planning to hit the Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind show, when Sci texted me that he was planning to see the Pepper Coyote and Fox Amoore concert at the same time which I'd missed on the schedule. I'm glad I went, because Pepper hadn't impressed me in the Friday concert, but Saturday he got to show off some beatboxing and looping skills. I wandered around the convention area a lot, wondering why I found so few people I knew, and spent some more hours in the game room. Ended the night by stopping by the dance to see what it was like -- the light show was impressive and and the big ballroom was moderately full of furs, mostly at least kind of dancing, but I was weighed down by my backpack and not much in the mood to do what dancing I do.
Sunday, got up in time to shower and leave the room at noon, then watched the dance competition, and we headed home.
The combination of my room being a half-mile walk from the con and my having packed much more than I should in the backpack I wanted to carry with me really weighed me down. I definitely shouldn't have brought Dominion with me -- it's just too much of an anchor. Of course, even if I'd been in the main hotel, if I'd been stuck on a high floor, my room would have been almost as inaccessible, because they were running elevator control -- MFF attendees could only get on the elevator on the main floor, which meant that the traffic jam around the escalators was even more phenomenal than last year -- and you had to line up and wait to get on. If I go next year -- which, for the first time ever I'm not completely sure I will -- I will really want to have a room in the Hyatt on a walkable floor. And I want to tell myself now that having a good con experience will depend on having some things planned in advance, because the con has gotten too big to just bump into people I know and tag along with them.