August 14th, 2012
I slept very poorly last night. I woke up at 5:00 am and immediately had bad diarrhea. Was this a sign of things to come? I was quite worried that this will go on all morning - not a good thing when one is flying and all - so I prayed that it wouldn't and hopefully the Goddess will answer my call. I managed to shower and shave, and then finished up the last of the packing before eating breakfast. Unfortunately, had another round of diarrhea. Joy - not!
spross arrived with his mother, who's giving us a lift to the airport, around 6:45 am. Before we started to load the car and head off for the airport, the rain started to pound down. We managed to wait it out, and then got only mildly soaked as we dashed for the car. We finished packing the car with out suitcases and carry-on luggage, and then headed for the airport, arriving there with no mishaps.
Checking in for the flight to Toronto on the first leg of the trip was no problem, and everything went smoothly. My suitcase weighed 28 lbs. (12.7 kg.) and my carry-on bag weighed 8 lbs. (3.62 kg), both well under the limit, and my personal bag (in which I've got the diabetic snacks and medications, finger needles, and so forth) doesn't count against that, so all was good. (Here's a photo of me and spross sitting at Ottawa Airport waiting for the flight to Toronto.)
The flight to Toronto was pretty smooth, although I had another bout of diarrhea. It is not fun shitting on a plane like that - but it's better than snakes, eh? :) The plane was roomy enough to get the carry-on bag into the overhead rack and still have room for my legs underneath even with my personal item stowed below the seat in front of me. On the other hand, the walk to Customs in Toronto International was not fun. We started off with a long walk to an international section, and then found we'd went the wrong way to the Gate for the Toronto-Indianapolis flight, and had to double back the way we came. :( To add to the misery of it all, I had a nasty turn on the escalator up at one point, when the piece of hand luggage fell over as the stairs of the ecalator took that climb, and fell back some three steps, barely grabbing hold of a rail and the hand luggage to keep my balance, but my foot felt like I'd twisted it. Scared myself almost shitless, to be honest. By the time we got to the Gate area, I was sweating and exhausted. To make matters worse, I had to take a very nasty dump, and there was blood in it. I felt better after that, and spross went over to the Great Canadian Bagel concession, and picked us up lunch - I had a bagel with cream cheese on it. Yumm! It seemed to settle my stomach some. There were a lot of gamers heading for GenCon in the flight lounge, as might be expected, including the folks from Dream Pod 9. We sat there, waiting for the flight, and chatted with them a bit, as well as a couple of other gamers, and I also managed to read a couple of chapters in my current book, Christopher Moore's Fool.
The flight from Toronto to Indianapolis was delayed by about 15 minutes (a sign of things to come on the return flight home, perhaps?), but I wasn't all that concerned. These sorts of things happen all the time. There was no artificial corridor out to the small plane this time, and it was pouring outside, so we had to walk out in the rain onto the wet tarmac to hand over the hand luggage to be stowed (since it wouldn't fit the overhead rack or under the seat on a plane this size). Once we boarded the plane, it was a bit tight (I can handle this in the aisle seat, but spross seems to be a bit claustrophobic on planes this size). The trip to Indianapolis was 1 hour, 26 minutes, and passed rather uneventfully.
Once at Indianapolis Airport, I had forgotten the walking we had to do. We had to walk the length of the Indy airport, through the Food Court, to go to the baggage claim. My feet were definitely hurting by the time we got there, but it was easy to find the luggage at that point. We out out for a taxi, and...we took a purple taxi! I kid you not. spross even took a photo of the cab.
Words do not do the JW Marriott Hotel justice. The JW Marriott (JW for short from now on) is... incredible, beautiful, modern, state-of-the-art - and crowded! There were lots of people there already for the convention. I don't seem to know a soul there (other than spross of course). Check-in at the hotel was a breeze, and the room was quite nice, very modern, but it lacked a fan in the bathroom. Odd that.
After spross and I unpacked and made sure that the fridge would be installed, we took a taxi over to the Marsh Marketplace, and picked up about $70 worth of groceries and some pharmacy stuff that we needed as well. It took forever to get a taxi back to the JW Marriott, and we had a long wait. We got back to the hotel eventually, and then washed the grapes and put the foodstuffs in the fridge, and unpacked the pharmacy supplies (mouthwash, underarm deodorant, and a few other things) and stowed them. Here's a photo of the hotel room.
I cleaned up and changed out of the travel clothes to something fresh, and then spross and I went down to dinner at the hotel sports bar, High Velocity. Even before we had placed our orders, he somehow got cajoled by an old coot whose daughter was celebrating her 27th birthday a soft cookie sundae! No willpower, spross, but that's one of the things we like about him! :) Supper was a $26 12 oz. strip steak with mashed potatoes, side salad and broccolini. Expensive supper since I didn't eat more than half the meal, considering that I really wasn't hungry what with the "flight day" I had and the illness that I still suffered from. Just a sign of things to come, expenses-wise.
After dinner, spross and I walked up to the 2nd floor of the JW to check out the gaming area. Ye gods! It was a long walk to be honest, although in retrospect that may have been due to the long "flight day" that we'd had and that my stamina wasn't up to snuff after the health issues I've had the last little while. We then walked from the JW to the Indianapolis Convention Centre (ICC). Met a couple of folks, Jim and Lauren, and talked with them a bit about various stuff about GenCon while heading to the Exhibit Hall area and checking out the map of the Hall with a penlight that Jim had on him. It was the most difficult walk of my life, a good 10 to 15 minutes, and I wondered how I was going to manage Thursday and Friday with the games that I had to run. I'm either really out of shape walking like this, or the illness that I've been suffering has taken a lot out of me. Going to be a difficult week, I suspect. We headed back to the hotel, and by the time we got back, I had a bad stitch in the right hip. spross and I went up to the hotel room, and I had a light snack and some water, and then prepared for bed. I finished this last section of the entry, and then crashed for the night around 11:10 pm.
So there you have it folks, the first day of the Indy and GenCon trip for 2012. Somewhat long, yes, I know, but I trust it was enjoyable reading. The next entry will deal with GenCon Day -1, the 15th of August.