Well, I got back safe and sound! It was a 12 hour drive all the way back home to Massachusetts. Quite long and exhausting.
Well, let's try to recap.
I left on Wednesday morning and stopped off at Rochester, NY. I didn't want to make the trip in all in one day. It would be too long and I couldn't check in until Thursday, anyway. I stayed at a friend's house who I know from when I was in college. We got to catch up and it was a very good thing. He ran the Bible study I went to and is running a center/resource for local Catholics. Very knowledgeable, intelligent, and caring person.
The next morning I got up and made the 3ish hour trek up to the hotel. Met up with FA:matthiasrat, fulminar, and FA:jacobohare to check into our hotel room. I had already met Matthias in person previously at AC2013 but haven't met Fulminar yet. I didn't know Jacob either. It was cool to meet them for the first time. Great people. And they have great fursuits, btw! :)
After we unloaded our stuff in the hotel room, I got my pre-register badge from the front desk, as they already were handing those out. The rest of the con was still setting up, but I got a chance to receive the ten cent tour and get acquainted with the area. Then we met up with catmonkshiro and went to his apartment for some noms and hanging out. Met his roommates (someone please remind me, as I'm horrible at remembering names) and got to chat about lots of stuff, like games, anime, music, and comedians. Shiro is also a fantastic cook! He made some delicious pasta and sausage! Thanks again! :3
It got late very quickly. Eventually we had to head out and get to sleep. Next day was the start of the con!
The next day we got up sometime around 9ish. It was Friday. We grabbed some breakfast at Tim Horton's. All the restaurants were basically right down the street, which was very handy. "Timmy's" in Canada is basically like Dunkin Donuts in the States. Food was standard morning breakfast/cafe type stuff. At least, what I had was. Maybe a bit better quality than DD's, actually. :) It was Friday and it was Lent, so I had my BELT (bacon eggs lettuce tomato) without the bacon. It was a good breakfast.
We went back to the convention center and hotel and hung out a little bit, checking out things as they were getting started. I also at that point met FA:louphin (Wolfin) for the first time! Chatted briefly but he had to go nap due to a long drive with little sleep. I decided to get some fursuiting in. I never did it before at a con, so I was a bit nervous. Seeing the other fursuiters there, though, made me feel like I needed to start. Matthias helped mind me as I was a first timer and he was the only one I really knew as I arrived. Got in suit and made my way downstairs. Got to explore the place and had a lot of fun! Definitely will be doing it a lot more in the future. We went down to the Dealer's Den and Matthias showed me around to some of his favorite artists. He was getting a badge done for Salvestro as a surprise from hbruton and I decided to get a new taur badge from her as well. Put in the commission. Luckily I wear jeans with my fursuit so I was able to give her payment right away. ;) Shortly later, I met FA:zolarthezolf, who also was suiting. We hit it off quickly and he seemed cool so I wandered around with him. We got some fursuit photos, which I can't wait to see. It was tons of fun! 4 hours later and I was still going strong. But I was getting my limit and hadn't eaten lunch yet so I got out of suit and found Matthias and Jacob, and then we hit up Boston Pizza. Being Friday, it was no meat, so I had this Mediterranean pizza. Ate the full 10 inch pie very quickly. I was really hungry, but it was worth it. :)
We got back to the convention and I hung around a bit more. Eventually I found Zolar again and we hung out a bunch. This time, we were out of suit. Hung out for a few more hours, until I had to meet a couple friends from college at 7 at Moxie's for dinner (which, by the way, is really fancy!). Had a tasty Vietnamese style salmon sandwich. These friends were not furs but are local to the area, so we wanted to hang out. We ended up chatting until about 11 PM. XD
On Saturday I ended up sleeping in until about 11. So I got up and met up with Matthias. FA:Salvestro had arrived. It was his first furry con! He's a cool dude. :) We went out to eat at Jack Asster's for a quick lunch. Had some chicken parm, done in an interesting way. Cheese sauce and bow tie pasta. We chatted a bunch about religion and math and all the Far Side comics they had all over the walls, which are awesome. Got back to the con. Picked up my new badge from Heather Bruton and then went up and relaxed a bit in the room, chatting some more. Soon the fursuit photo and parade was gonna start so all us fursuiters got in suit and headed down. Salvestro went down and grabbed a spot to watch the parade. Jumped into place for the photo. Ended up somewhere near the back, my left side. Hopefully I am visible in the photo! After they took it, we got to wander a bit and chat until it was time to start the parade. I found Matthias and the others and said hi, and then went and found Zolar and met some of his friends. We were near each other during the parade. First time doing that. I was kind of unsure of what to do, so I just did a lot of waving and happy paws. Looked ok in the one video I found. Gonna be looking for more. At the end we got to relax a bit more. They brought in fans and lots of water and made the ballroom like a big headless lounge. After that, I believe we decided to take a break from suiting and got out of suit. Hung out a little bit wandering around the con. Met up with Wolfin again and chatted a bit. Eventually we got in suit again. Zolar and I went to the Improv panel while in suit and did a bit there. Then did more suiting. Some hours later, we all went out for sushi, and I met a bunch of other friends of his. It was really good. Had about 8 people there, I think. After that, we got back and did more suiting. And then dances started and we suited a bit in there. Was fun! I discovered that fursuit dancing burns me out REALLY FAST. So I didn't do too much. We left and went up to one of Zolar's friend's rooms to hang out a bit. He grabbed some tasty flavored rum stuff on the way. I had lots of chips and water. Hung out until 1 AM when I left and had to go to bed.
I suited for about 8 hours in total on Saturday. I felt good about myself. XD
Got up EARLY for Mass with Matthias and Salvestro on Sunday. Was tired and hungry, but it was a good Mass. No music, which I didn't expect but I appreciated, it being so early and me being so tired. XD Afterwards we went to Tim Horton's again (since there was pretty much nothing else for breakfast in the area). Was good. We made it back to the convention. Hung around for a little bit, let myself wake up and all that. Eventually we (myself, Matthias, Fulminar, Jacob, and Salvestro) went to grab a quick lunch from Subway nearby. Brought it back and ate it at the convention center. Once I finished that up... I did more suiting. :D Met up with Zolar, and we went up to my room. I got in suit, and then we went to his room and he got in suit. Did that for about 4 and a half hours. Got some more fursuit photos in the process, this time solo. Salvestro ended up having to leave eventually. He couldn't get any weekdays off from work and had to be home by the evening. Said our goodbyes and he was off. He totally had lots of fun, which is great. :) I think he'll be doing this again. ;)
Things were starting to end and it was weird. I eventually got out of suit and hung out a bit more with Matthias, Jacob, and Fulminar. We all went out for some tasty dinner at a Chinese-Indian fusion restaurant. It was crazy good. After dinner we went back and they had a few games of Lupus In Tabula, which I never played before. It's a Mafia style card game (which I also never played before). Had tons of fun! It got late, though, and we all had to go to bed.
The next morning was the sad day for checking out and saying goodbyes. Lots of goodbyes. Had lots of fun and met a ton of great people. I definitely would say it was worth it, though. I will for sure be trying to make it next year. :)
And... I think in total I got about 17 hours (at the most, anyway) of suiting in for the whole weekend! I feel pretty good about myself. Especially since it was my first time suiting at a con. I'm told that my stamina was pretty dang good and I even was told that I looked like I've been doing it for a while already. I suppose that's a good thing. ^^;
So then there was that 12 hour drive back home. On the way, though, I grabbed some Canadian Maple Whiskey. Haven't tried it yet, but it looks intriguing! :)
Thanks guys for making it a very fun weekend! :D It was a whirlwind. I met SO many new people. I went into the con only knowing one (in person), and two others (online). It was crazy!
Sorry if I got some details lost. There was also lots of people I didn't mention that I bumped into and chatted with. No worries. Definitely ping me though, as I can easily forget a face or name. Especially in cases like this where it was just NON STOP. XD