Tag: US West Coast Tour 2011

March 16, 2011
Thursday March 10
A lazy day. Check out of hotel, but leave luggage with them, while I take a taxi to a mall in nearby Glendale. 
I’ve been travelling with a suitcase and a small backpack, but as I aquire things, and neatly folded clean clothes turn to scrumpled dirty clothes, I am becoming luggage-challenged. So I find a good Samsonite wheeled duffel to take the strain, knowing that all my air tickets permit me two pieces of hold luggage.

March 16, 2011
March 9, 2011
The Warner Brothers tour office is only 10 minutes from my hotel, and I wander down there at 10, for my tour.
Our guide is Thom, who as well as having an encyclopaedic knowledge of Warner Brothers, as you would expect, also seems to particularly enthusiastic about genre shows. He claims to be the only fan of the sadly cancelled Invasion – I correct him on this matter.
We begin with a tour of the backlots, with Thom reeling off a list of shows that each building appeared in. Many of the backlot sets are used for externals only. Some buildings are less than 10 feet deep, facade and nothing else. Others are proper buildings, but the interiors house offices. However, some are ‘practical’ sets, with insides as well as outsides. We are taken into one in particular, and find ourselves walking into the Geller’s house, from Friends, with the staircase where young Ross pined over his Casio keyboard while Monica and Rachel got ready for their prom dance.

March 8, 2011
I’m getting a lift towards LA, travelling with Gerry, Sandy and Rhiannon, when Gerry asks if I am interested in stopping off on the way at planet Vulcan. Of course, I say yes.
Vasquez Rocks is an area of natural rock formations caused by the San Andreas fault. Look in one direction and you can see smooth boulder formations, turn around and you face a dramatic rock strata, sticking out of the earth at 60 degrees. Being so close to LA and Hollywood it is inevitable that it should be used in numerous films and TV shows, including Star Trek. Walking about I half expect a Gorn to jump out at me, and I can’t but help look for a barrel of a Winchester amongst the western-looking boulders to my left.
We drive on until we reach Sandy and Gerry’s home, where we dump my luggage and pick up Shawn, before going to Famous Dave’s, where we are served a massive BBQ platter on a (clean!) garbage can lid.

March 7, 2011
I’m sorry, but I was just having too good a time at Consonance to worry about blogging. So here is a rather concise summary.
Friday was very much spent how I normally spend convention Fridays – hanging out and meeting folk. A surprising number of people I had met before, and after a few hours I felt that many others seemed like old friends too. I sat in on the Friday night filking, and saw it through to 2:40am.
Saturday: got up too late for breakfast, but Starbucks saved the day. Ran through my set in my room, then tried to forget about it until the time. Fate (or the concom) were kind to me – lately it seems I have been always following either GOH or otherwise notable acts. This time I was on before Joe Giacoio and Carla Ulbrich, for which I was very grateful.

March 4, 2011
Have had a couple of great days at Kathy’s, allowing me to really relax before the con. Came over last night for a meal with members of the concom and other guests, and then booked into the hotel.
I’ve been told that the hotel wifi is expensive, and besides, it doesn’t seem to like the android browser. However, on waking up this morning, too late for breakfast, I found a Starbucks not 5 minutes away, with free wifi and nice breakfast sandwiches.
So I’ve no need to go into net withdrawel yet!

March 2, 2011
March 2, 2011
So there I was with an 11 hour flight and with a selection of over 30 current films to choose from to bide my time.
Except the video controller for my seat was broken and nothing the cabin staff tried would fix it.
However, I have to say the cabin staff were great and plied me with brandy until they found me a portable dvd player. Alas the dvds they had were a lot less recent. I rewatched Green Zone, which I had seen before but enjoyed, and Knight and Day, which I was surprised that I liked.

February 24, 2011
Today is my last day at work for a while. I have a busy weekend ahead of me, getting all my clothes and stuff together and packed, and doing my guitar practice; then on Tuesday next week, I fly out to San Francisco for a 3 week holiday.

The trip will include staying with various filkers throughout the California state, attending Consonance, and spending time exploring both Los Angeles and San Franciso.