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Hijinks Ensue

Orbital 2008 report 2 - Friday

I've just opened the bedroom curtains on Sunday morning and it's snowing outside! OK, it's really feeble southern snow - the odd flake that melts as soon as it touches the ground - but I can't complain too much. At least it's not a heatwave.

After getting to bed well after 1AM on Friday morning I got up again before 7AM and headed off to breakfast. It seems that if you get there early (it's open before the official 8AM start time) you get seated in the brasserie instead of the overflow area, and they have actual fried eggs! After breakfast I tried to get a key for the cyberdrome workshop room from Ops but nobody was up yet, so I wandered around the hotel a bit and got chatting to asphodeline who had volunteered to be Neil Gaiman's assistant for the weekend was waiting in the foyer for him to arrive.

watervole got me a key so I went and unpacked the workshop and spent ages taping two layers of newspaper onto the wooden table, then assembling the basic structure of the City of the Future. The fact that it was a wooden table should have rung alarm bells - the reason we'd agreed to take that room was because on the site visit it had an unmovable glass table in it and the other one didn't, and Chaos Costume wanted to be able to move the table out of the way and work on the floor. The costumers arrived later on and immediately noticed that their room had a giant glass table in it: yes, the hotel had moved it since the site visit (I'm pretty sure they assured us they weren't going to put any more glass tables in before the con - they obviously thought it wasn't worth mentioning they were going to move an existing one). Anyway, we got everything swapped over and it doesn't seem to have caused too much confusion (though the newsletter somehow got an incorrect notice in it saying we'd moved into the other room on that corridor).

At 2PM I escaped from the workshop and went to the ceilidh training session. They started out slowly walking us through various steps and worked up to some faster dances. It was two hours long and energetic at times so I was pretty tired by the end - not good considering the real Ceilidh was later that evening. Most of the steps didn't sink in but the practise was useful and I picked up some useful tips. The people running the session were trying to teach us the steps to an English dance they didn't know from some instructions on a sheet of paper, and at one point they turned two pages over at once and got everyone on the floor into a complete muddle. As a nice bonus there were about twice as many women as men there so no trouble finding a partner!

In the evening after some dinner and the opening ceremony was the ceilidh itself. It was brilliant fun. I really should try to find a local dance I can go to. I danced for hours with many different partners and was completely knackered by the end. A special mention must go to helenex and munchkinstein who were spinning at double the speed of everyone else! After the ceilidh I wandered around for a bit wondering where everyone had gone (I hadn't realised it was after 1AM) and arborophile called me into the games room to play Werewolves. I didn't know the rules so I was trying to figure them out as the game progressed, while (successfully) hiding the fact that I'd been given one of the Werewolf cards!

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