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Alpha:2012

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Alpha:2012
Breakway Convention: LA, 1999
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"For the rest of your life, you can choose new members for your family.  That's true of everyone, whether they've lost their mothers or their fathers or their wives.  That's one of the great gifts of being alive.  Your family can always grow."
 
William Latham, Eternity Unbound (Powys Media)

 
 
I picked up Eternity Unbound from Mateo Latosa at the convention, and started reading on the plane yesterday.  Given it was already a melancholy day, when I read the above, I was almost in tears on the plane, and am most definitely teary reading those lines again now.  That's a sure sign of a truly stellar convention weekend!

My Alphan family has been growing since the Breakway Con in 1999 and the "relaxicons" between then and now. Some of you I've known very well since 1999 and I count among my dearest friends, and some of you I've been TICKLED to meet this weekend and include among the remarkable people in my life!!  It's gonna make me crazy, not seeing you all...till the next time!  I thank the Mysterious Unknown Force for the internet!
 
Firstly, to  the Con Committee: THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for all the incredibly hard work you all put into this project.  I know the rest of us will never fully "get" just how much you've done.  No way can I properly express how much fun I had this past weekend!!
 

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"My" volcano, Mt. Baker, from the airport Wed morning

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The moon, John, and Venus, from YVR.

My time in Burbank started on the Wednesday, because I wanted to have time to search out a grocery store so I could get through the stay, what with food sensitivities, yada yada.  Our dear, dear, Paul B. very kindly offered to take a few of us for a run.  Never mind how burned out and busy he would have been!  Paul, you have my unending thanks!!!
 
It was nice to see so many others had arrived early, too.  I can't believe it's 4 years already since the relaxicon in Calgary...it feels like yesterday that I last saw Bob Wood!  It's always great to see you!  And ANTHONY D!! My gawd, it's been 11 years since I last saw you at "Tampa 1"! How can that be?  I'm so happy we are in constant contact online.
 
Wed. was probably the last decent night's sleep I had. :)  When it comes to these conventions, sleep is overrated.

 
 
"The Wall"

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My Wall partner-in-crime, Roy Bjellquist.
 
 
 

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Besides re-connecting with old friends, it was wonderful to meet some of you have been attending our monthly chats which started as a lead-up to the con, but will now be ongoing (info later).  Our regular "new" chat faces included Paul B, Paul S, Warren,  Roy, Dave_M and we had many others who were able to make it to a few chats as well.  I CANNOT SAY ENOUGH how wonderful it was to meet you in person!

Some days were so busy that I just couldn't do it all and had to bail out of a few things. There are a few panels I'm sorry I missed...but I'm hopeful I'll see them next time! :)

Likewise some people I just didn't get to spend enought time with!! :/  Where did the time go?  I think the next con needs to be a few days longer!! :)

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In spite of this not being in focus, I just HAD to
include it: it was img1999 on my camera!
 
I apologize for the quality of the photos...many
were lost due to bad exposures. I miss my old
Canon SLR...time to upgrade to a serious digital camera.

 
 
The Dealers' Room

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Auction in the hall

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Christopher Penfold, Anton Phillips, Prentis Hancock

 
 
 
Judy Geeson's Panel

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Judy Geeson, Chris Penfold

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Nick, Judy, Chris, Anton, Prentis

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Nick Tate

Nick Tate, was as always, a delightful guest at our con.  It was great fun to have his son join us for an evening, too!

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The ever-handsome Anton Phillips!

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Rosie Badgett with Anton

It was so nice to have Anton join us at another convention!  Thank you, Anton, for being so giving of your time with the fans.

 
 
 
Martin Landau's Panel

 
 
After hearing that Martin Landau had cancelled, it was a great surprise to have him join us after all!
 

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Chris, Nick, Martin, Prentis

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There are alot of photos I wish I'd got, including of the Malice folks. I really, really enjoyed their episode which was shown at the convention!  They have graciously allowed me to include their own photo here.
 
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Mark Hyde, Brittany Martz, Philip J. Cook

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Robert Wood

I really enjoyed your discussion, Robert!

 
 
Barbara Bain's Panel

The First Lady of the Moonbase!!

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Old Friends

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Anthony and James

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Jeffrey and Patrick

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Old friends and new

Back row: Mike, Ken, David
Front row: Bob, Roy, Kevin, David, Andy

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Total Concentration

Mike Jones and I joined our first seance (don't ask) at Breakaway in '99.  We've waited a long time do it again.  ;)

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A couple of our Alphan Menfolk, Warren and Robert

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Roy Bjellquist and me

Photo shamelssly stolen from Ken Scott. :)  I wish I'd taken more photos in general, but I got only one of  the dance, and it wasn't so good! I hope someone will be posting more soon.
 
 
 
 

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Monday, at breakfast: Artur, Linda, Warren, Roy

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Rosie kicks off the closing ceremony

And then the final moments were upon us.  A good con is always a deeply emotional thing.  Several times throughout I would shut my eyes and think, "this is part of my ongoing Alphan story" and get really choked up.  Closing ceremonies was one of those moments.
 
Alot of you know by now (I hope!) how much you mean to me.  These cons are truly bigger than the show - as we know well, it's about the friendships forged.  There are so many new people I finally got to meet face-to-face after knowing your names from the Yahoo groups and/or from Facebook and everyone was, without fail, a sweetheart!  Why aren't you all living in Vancouver?? lol
 
 
 
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The Mysterious Unknown Force (MUF)  was messing with me all weekend.  Weirdest event was this "1999" icon suddenly appearing on my cell phone!  What's THAT all about??  lol  Bob Lyons tells me it's a contact icon.  What,  I've been given a direct line?  
 
(For the record, that photo is the Black Sun I painted on my nightsky ceiling). :)
 
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If you'd like to join us sometime for our monthly chats, you can find the info on the convention website near the bottom of the Duty Roster page ("Monthly Fan Chat"). I also
post reminders on Facebook.
 
This Sunday (Sept 23) we'll be doing an additional "Post Con Depression Chat". lol Do come...