Over the weekend, I went to the Malice Domestic Mystery Conference. I had a blast! Unfortunately, I didn't think to download my camera's software to my laptop, so I don't yet have any pictures to show for it. (Bummer, eh?)
We traveled from western New York to Arlington, VA, on Thursday. The skies were gray (can you say "gloomy?") but for some reason the nine-hour drive seemed a lot shorter than usual. Go figure! We actually got in about 45 minutes earlier than anticipated. I got to my room and immediately called my Writers Plot blog buddy Sheila Connolly. We made plans to meet and, having realized we were missing vital supplies (plastic cups for me, and a jug of ice tea for Sheila), headed off to the Rite Aid in Crystal City.
Next, we met up with our other pal Leann Sweeney, and the gab fest began in earnest. You see, Sheila and Leann had never officially met, although we've been blogging together for over two years. We called (and called, and called, and called) the fourth member of the group in attendance--Jeanne Munn Bracken--but for some reason she wasn't getting the calls, and since she has no small children to program her cell phone, didn't have voice mail set up.
Eventually, hunger got the best of us, so, joining up with our pal Toni Kelner, we headed off for dinner at a lovely Mexican restaurant. My meal was okay--could've been a little hotter (I like my food PIPING HOT--I mean, burn your esophagus hot), so tepid was a bit of a disappointment. After being on the road all day, hubby and I figured we deserved a libation. His Dos XX beer was HUGE (I couldn't lift it) and my martini was good. Until I we got the bill--holy crap! $9.25 for a friggin' martini? Okay, maybe I'm a rube from the sticks--but I sure would've savored it a bit more had I known the cost.
Of course, as we were leaving the restaurant, we finally met up with Jeanne and her friend Margy, who had been searching for us--but hadn't thought to give us a call (or maybe she didn't have the number--I was still fuming over that $9.25 martini to pay attention), but we staged a hug-a-thon there in the tunnels of Crystal City before Sheila, Leann, and I headed back to the hotel's convention floor for early registration.
Registering for Malice is kind of like getting an early Christmas. They give you a badge and a BIG bag of books. So of course we had to retreat to some very comfy club chairs to find out what Santa Malice had bestowed upon us. Lots of hardcovers this year, making for a very heavy bag. I managed to fleece my pals of their complimentary copies of American Girl books (for my niece, who works in a rural school system, to give to her kids), while a steady stream of friends came and went (more hugging) until we were so tired we were ready to drop. Then it was back to the room, where I was too tired to write about the L-O-N-G day. (Too tired to even read!!!)
NEXT UP: The Big First Day of Malice Domestic 2009