After months and months of counting down the days, it’s finally time for the Golden Crown Literary Society’s 8th Annual Conference! The conference is being held in Minneapolis this year, which is much closer to my home than Orlando. Thus, the drive didn’t take nearly as long this year.  Of course, it also means that I won’t be on vacation for as long this year.

That’s okay…there’s always next year and that just means I can take a little time later in the year.  Maybe a long weekend somewhere with Mom.

Anyway…back on topic!

We left the house at about 5:15am on Wednesday, 6/13.  I’d wanted to get out earlier, but I didn’t get to bed the night before until after 1:00am – there was just too much to do.  And in the morning, I was busy getting the car packed up.  So, if we hit some traffic, that was just the way it would have to be.  As it turned out, we didn’t hit a lot of traffic and got out of Chicago relatively unscathed.

Just before reaching the Wisconsin border, we stopped for breakfast at Cracker Barrel and then got back on the road.  With the exception of a brief stretch of road in Madison, WI, the highways were pretty clear and the trip was an easy one.

We arrived at the hotel in Minneapolis (Bloomington, actually) around 1:30pm and immediately ran into people that we know.  It’s always nice to meeting up with a group of people who you’re excited to see and who are excited to see you.  We checked to see if our rooms were ready early, but they weren’t.  No problem!  A jaunt down to our conference area brought us to more friends!

My room was finally ready around 4:30pm…oy!  The people at the desk were really nice and very apologetic.  They kept harassing housekeeping about what was taking so long.  My room was supposed to be ready at 3:00pm for check in!  But, it’s okay.  I hung out in the room of some friends and walked around our convention area a bit.  So it wasn’t too bad.  However, once I got to my room, it was time to get a quick rest, check in with Mom at home, and hit the shower to wash off the day of traveling.

The Meet-n-Greet was just downstairs.  (It’s quite nice, actually…most of us are in rooms right above our conference area.  It’s really quite convenient.)  I was able to see and say hello to a number of people I’ve gotten to know at previous conferences as well as friends I’ve made on Facebook.  Hugs are always so welcome…and freely given by everyone.  I took a bit of time to walk around the room – it’s our vending area, so books and tshirts and all kinds of things are being sold.  Our silent auction items were also on display, so I had to browse a bit.

But then, I called it a night.  I’d only gotten a few hours of sleep the night before and it was a busy day.  I got up to my room and sat on the bed to watch TV.  The next thing I knew, it was after midnight.  I hadn’t even called to say goodnight to my mother!

I was just one tuckered out Golden Crowner!

Next post:  Day one of the conference.

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