Los Angeles smells funny. I knew that, actually. But I forget, when I don't go for a while. I get home, and I smell the air, and it smells like... trees. And dead leaves. (The leaves started falling while I was gone. It was nice to come back to that.) It also comes up fast, when you're flying in. You go from desert, desert, desert, and then all of a sudden, CITY! Which in places looks smudgy, like it's under glass. I like L.A. It has Disneyland. This is a positive thing. I really don't think I could live there, but it's nice to visit.
I haven't been to California since SubCon 2001: A Horse Odyssey. (I think. I'm pretty sure.) daroos picked me up from LAX on Thursday. Something I didn't quite pick up from LJ: the Rooses are an SCA household. (Which is SO COOL.) RoosMum also bought me organic milk without giving me any particularly funny looks. We went swing dancing (mostly I watched - I have not done swing since high school and apparently not a lot of it stuck, but watching was equally fun: there was always the possibility of horrible foot-entanglement; they move so fast), and when we got back, RoosMum was taking chocolate chip cookies out of the oven. *melts*
Yes. The RoosHouse is Of The Strong. I am telling you. (Although I doubt I need to tell that to cocojava and jewelweed, as they have also experienced the RoosHouse. Yay.)
Additionally, I am no less terrified of the Los Angeles highway system than I was the last time I was in L.A. In fact, it is possible that I am more terrified. Highways twenty lanes across. Overpasses layered six high. Ack. o.O
The pre-con dinner was at Claim Jumpers, which for a delightful change of pace was at a restaurant with lots of stuff I could actually eat. Not that I ate most of it. As advertised, the portions at Claim Jumpers were enormous. Like, half the size of me. I had a bowl of soup and a third of an appetizer platter I shared with deathpixie and trishalynn (Trisha obliged Rossi and I by ridding the platter of the things-made-of-meat). Also, while sitting together we realised we were the perfect beginning to a really lame joke: "An American, a Canadian, and an Australian walk into a bar..." I almost pity the other diners we were tormenting, but not really, because it was too much fun. (Especially the penultimate checkers death-match Daroos and I couldn't seem to finish. We just kept fighting to standstill, two crowned pieces chasing one another around the board.) Then Daroos and I shared a piece of what Americans apparently call cheese pie, but was more or less cheesecake. It had Oreos. It had chocolate chips. It was Good. And then I could barely stand for being so full of food. (I shouldn't talk. indigoskynet attempted, with help, an eclair that was, and I am not exaggerating, the size of my head. I was full of respect and fear. That happened several times on this trip. Like when watching Daroos do her homework. She is a math major. Respect and fear. That's what.)
Then we went to Serenity. Of course. (It really doesn't get any easier with repetition. *whimper*) trishalynn hadn't seen it. Her reactions were good fun times for all. *patpat* Not that the entire theatre didn't... er. Spoilers. Right. ;) But at the end, we all sang the theme, standing there in the movie theatre, getting delightfully weird looks from the staff. Bwahah.
Saturday: well, it was a big deal. It was big, there was lots of food, and lots of people. The house was gorgeous. The O'Guinns were all friendly, and bustling, and very, very Irish. It went well into the evening, and Kelly would have loved it. There were name-tags. A stroke of genius, actually.
And then there was karaoke. Which was also marvelously appropriate. But perhaps a horrible mistake on my part, as we were sharing the stage with an engagement party, and by the time my turn came around, I had been singing along with so many other people that my range had gone down half an octave. Argh. I feel like I should drag everyone to Rain Dancing just to redeem myself. Many of us were dragged up to sing Cher. smolder sang Britney Spears. That's gonna stay with me a while. ;) But it was lots and lots of fun, and I left with the RoosMobile at half-past midnight, but I'm told that the Subrealicon kept them 'til closing.
Next morning, we watched Firefly. I think cocojava hadn't seen Heart of Gold, so we got up and did that, until her dad came to pick her up. We watched another episode, then I told daroos of my dangerously complicated post-Serenity fic, and pimped out B5, and then we watched Hollow Man and mocked until the DVD crapped out. Eventually we packed me up and went to meet mice, indigoskynet, dandesun, firesignwriter, and Beth (whose LJ handle I can't remember). We went to Borders, and a toy store. Then we went to meet pebblin for sushi, and firesignwriter (EDIT: For some reason I wrote dandesun, here, first. o.O) experienced sushi for the first time, with much input from all present. Seemed to work out good except for the reaction she had to... something. Then I transferred my stuff from daroos's car to mice's. firesignwriter was deposited at LAX, then we stopped at a Borders (Where, yes, I bought another book, shut up; I finished Anansi Boys before boarding the plane and without another book it would have been a Bad Scene. Got a Diana Wynne Jones, who everyone keeps telling me I should read.), and returned to Mice's.
And then it was morning. I put it so dramatically because, LAX in the morning. Ugh. (YVR has spoiled me. I know this. But. UGH.) Got more shifty looks from the security personnel on both ends, however the flight was made amusing by the two cute Australian boys I had next to me the whole flight. I changed my money back to useable currency inside security, and Dad was waiting outside the doors. We stopped for fish and chips, at a fish and chip shop on 10th I was only vaguely aware was there, and I came home. My Javajewels bracelet had finally shown up. (It is even cooler and weirder than I expected. Bwahah.)
(Oh, mik100? I got you something. Heh. :P)
And now I need to unpack... and wait, impatiently, for my feckless presentation partner to send me his half of the précis (hey, Semagic does do French accents!) so I can finish it. I HATE group work. Why are they making us do group work in a 400-level class? We are Arts students. I understand making Sciences majors work in groups; in those fields you *have* to work with people. But English and History majors tend more toward the bitter loner type. Assuming we end up having jobs, of course. ;)
The BCTF is back at work. I find this depressing, considering the circumstances. I WANT MY BLOODY COUP, DAMNIT.
I need to conspire with thatpalebluedot and/or finish/record the Kielle song. But... tomorrow. Tonight I must unpack, and finish the stupid, stupid project.