Fanfest 2011 – Day 2

5 AM local time

Another round of pushups. I could feel my muscles cramping. What the hell was wrong with me?

7 AM local time

Enjoyed eight plates of breakfast. There’s just something to be said about a buffet, whether it’s good or bad, it’s limitless food.

9 AM local time

The snowball hit me in the back of the head. The Gallente station had gone with a winter climate for this gathering of capsuleers; an odd choice I thought.

I could feel the snow running down the collar of my jacket, melting against the heat of my back. My face contorted as I spun to face my assailants; a group of playing children. I was barraged with another volley of snowballs, but managed to dodge most of them, gathering up the snow around me. It was perfect for packing. I ran my bare hands around and around, hardening the snow into ice; if they wanted to gank me, they were going to pay.

Fifteen minutes later it was me in full retreat. Children just don’t know when to give up, let it go and go home. Within that context, Goonswarm suddenly made a little more sense.

I walked along the station promenade, casually shopping for anything that caught my attention. There was a festive shop with two attractive employees; my attention was caught. I walked inside. By the time I had left, not only had I learned about the local winter festival tradition involving a mountain witch that would come and snatch you as a child if you were bad all year (and cook you in her stew), but I learned about the thirteen yulelads, a group of mischieveous yet good hearted elves – candle beggar, door sniffer, shoe stealer and other equally fun filled names. I even purchased a candle beggar tree ornament by the time I was done.

My NeoCom buzzed. “You’re go with Roc.” I said. It was something I heard recently on a local talkshow, and I found it hysterical, so had started answering my NeoCom that way. So far, I don’t think anyone had any idea what the hell I was talking about, which made it even more entertaining to me.

“What? Why would I know that? Fine. Yeah, there’s one nearby, hold onto your ass a sec.” My crew chief had called. He wanted to know if the rumours of high fuel prices in this region was true, and I hadn’t been bothered to look. I did so then, and man, those were the highest fuel prices I had ever seen. I conveyed my sentiment to my crew chief. He whistled through the NeoCom. “Yeah, it would cost a pretty isk to refuel here. Makes me happy I’m not a civilian. Ok, well technically I am, but you’re missing my point. No, I get that, I’m just saying. Ok, you know what? I’m hanging up now. You take care and I’ll …” He had hung up on me. Jackass.

I spent most of the day taking in the history and culture of the region through various station tours, as well as doing a lot of research gathering of things that would probably remain best left unsaid.

My evening was meant to be a relaxing visit to a thermal pool, accompanied by the most beautiful woman I had ever laid eyes on, even though it’s important that every woman you’re with believes that. I did manage to spend some time with her, and it was well worth it, but ultimately duty called.

There were several pilots getting together at a local pub, and they had invited me along. Who was I to say no to a night of free beer and cigars?

My pool date agreed to go back to my hotel room and wait for me there, and I headed for the pub. It was the best decision I had made all day. It was as if I had been transported to the land of free flowing blondes and thigh high boots.

Seriously ask any pod pilot there about Rachel. Garters, thigh high boots, tall … I saw more than one pilot crash and burn attempting to engage her in conversation. I chuckled from where I stood at their failed attempts, and continued to engage in several conversations I was enjoying on the back porch, all the while enjoying a good cigar or two.

3 AM local time

Eventually, the night came to an end and I staggered back to my room. I had forgotten I had a lovely there waiting for me. She was passed out in the bed. I stank of booze and smoke, so like any well-mannered Brutor, I splashed some water on my face, rinsed my mouth, then climbed in naked beside her. Being the romantic I am, I gently caressed her arm, and as she responded, gently waking up and reciprocating, I had to forcefully restrain myself from puking.

I quickly made my to the bathroom, focused on some deep breathing, drank a few glasses of water. Once I had calmed down and was sure that what was down was staying down, I headed back to the bed.

She had fallen asleep.

I gently caressed her arm, hoping to pick up where things had left off. She woke up a little, and spoke to me lovingly,

“Don’t even think about it.”

I rolled over on my back. You’re getting old, Roc, I thought to myself. Can’t even your beer. My thoughts were interrupted by the rush of chunks to the back of my throat, and I ran for the bathroom again.

It was going to be a fantastic night.

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3 responses to “Fanfest 2011 – Day 2

  1. Someday Roc, you will be fortunate enough to be a father, traveling with children, and when the airline fails to place you, your toddler, you wife and infant together, you will need the generosity of strangers so that you don’t ruin the flight for everyone. Someday. Then you should remember that you did the right thing, maybe for a family, when you didn’t need it.

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