Meeks (meeksp) wrote,

An unexpected business trip

So, ego_sideways, aka Toast was in Seattle for a few days, and we took advantage of his proximity to Vancouver to exchange some puppets and books! He'd originally planned to come up here to deliver them on Monday, but some of his travel companions thought the Memorial Day lineups at the US border would make a day trip unfeasible. Since it was easier to find overnight accommodations for a single person than for a family travelling with a young child, I got to go on a mini-vacation/business trip instead. :)

There's a shuttle bus that runs between downtown Vancouver and SeaTac airport with a few stops in between, so I took one of those, and was pleased to discover that the coach was equipped with wi-fi! That let me keep in touch via Facebook and e-mail without the usual roaming charges on the other side of the border, which was good, because it did turn out to be an unusually busy day, and I got to Seattle nearly an hour after the scheduled arrival time.

Toast and I had never actually met IRL, but I had my kitty hat on for maximum recognizability and he's tall enough not to disappear in a crowd, so we had no trouble finding each other at the bus stop. We walked a little under a mile from there to get to the hotel, and I think I laughed most of the way there. Those of you who have encountered Toast online will understand when I say he talks just like he types. Really. He says that stuff out loud. I found it both awesome and hilarious. XD

At the hotel, I was introduced to Mrs. Toast, and a happy, giggling Crouton before going to dinner. During which we actually spoke to each other — partly because lurking in an IRL conversation can be surprisingly difficult. :P It was getting late in Toastie's home timezone by the time we finished eating and got my sleeping arrangements sorted (which may or may not have involved some childish squeeing over the novelty of using a debit card with Elder Days Story Time written on it), so we settled in with our respective laptops...and chatted on Skype. The chatroom did have other people in it, but, yeah, we're geeks. :D

I was a bit worried about my ability to fall asleep and wake up at reasonable hours in an unfamiliar environment, but between the long day I'd had, my weighted blanket, and the sunlight streaming through the window the next morning, it fortunately wasn't a problem.

I met Mrs. Toast's parents at breakfast, and the whole family turned out to be mercifully weird. Weird is good; I prefer weird people. It's the ones that consider themselves normal and think everyone else should be too that are frightening. We went out all together to play tourist, and we got on better than I usually do with people I've just met. It may have helped that they were predisposed to like me after I presented them with this ;):

I may colour this and turn it into a promotional poster or if I didn't have enough of a backlog to work on. :P

This couldn't decently be called a business trip unless I actually did some 'work', so Toast and I returned to the hotel after lunch to sort and sign the books for our Kickstarter backers. I had two other reward commissions that I gave to him along with the puppets, and he gave me a box of books to bring back to Canada.

A really big box of books.

The box took up considerably more space than the puppets had, and was a whole lot less squishy, so there was some concern over whether I'd be able to fit it into my suitcase, but thanks to the amazing space-bending abilities of Mrs. Toast, we got it in, blanket and all. :)

I took the monorail to the bus stop with Toast and the now much heavier suitcase, and arrived with a few minutes to spare. The return trip was uneventful, and the Canadian border guards barely glanced at my suitcase (as opposed to their US counterparts, who scanned every piece of luggage, and opened a few to examine the contents.) About the most exciting thing that happened on the way back was passing a field with llamas grazing in it a little after the border. We were moving too fast for me to get a picture of them, though.

In any case, I made it back intact, and more or less on time. And now I have books!

Crossposted from Dreamwidth. Comments are welcome either here or there.
Tags: art, picture book, status

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