ConGlomeration was held over the weekend of August 10-12, 2007 at the Clarion Hotel and Convention Center in Louisville, Kentucky. It was horrendously hot even for August, and our van doesn't have working air conditioning, which made the trip decidedly unpleasant. We opened all the windows we could manage (some of them don't work properly) and tried to keep hydrated as we sweated our way down there.
We arrived in Louisville on Thursday and stayed the night at a Quality Inn on Bardstown Road. They were resurfacing their parking lot, so we had to park some distance away from our sleeping room. It was a bit of a hassle, but once we actually got everything in for the night, the air conditioning was really welcome.
I was in the middle of typing up George Sand's novel The Countess of Rudolstadt for Vera Nazarian's Norilana Classics line, so as soon as we were settled in, I got out my laptop and the fragile book from which I was typing it and set to work. Thus I spent the rest of the night with Consuelo as she encounters Prussian royalty and even the mysterious Count St. Germaine (the historical figure, not necessarily a vampire -- it was rather interesting to see the historical novel through the lens of genre readership).
The nest morning we got up early to get our stuff back out and head over to the convention center. We moved the van over to a parking place closer to our room for it, and as we did, I had this odd frisson of memory of having made just such a maneuver the morning we went to Windycon in 2005, when we had such a nightmare getting back home.
Thankfully we had no trouble getting ovet to the convention center, and we were even able to secure a good parking place. Once they had the doors opened, we had a whole bunch of helpers to get everything unloaded in record time. After that it was just a matter of getting everything set up and getting my stuff on the art show before the dealers' room opened for business, and get checked into the con hotel.
Sales were pretty fair, but we'd just been at a much larger convention the previous weekend, so we didn't want to make unfair comparisons. After the dealers' room closed for the night we headed up to our room to grab supper. We had a little trouble getting the credit card machine to dial out, but a couple calls to the front desk got that sorted out. We even had time to visit the Xerps party before turning in for the night.
Saturday we headed down to the con suite and grabbed some bagels for breakfast. Then we let the hotel know the showerhead was leaking so they could get it fixed.
We got our dealer's tables open and settled in to do business. Sales continued to be spotty -- we'd have times we were almost overwhelmed, and others when it was almost dead. I had time to plan out an entire story while waiting for stuff to happen.
In the evening we had supper and then headed around to the various parties. However, we didn't stay quite as long as we might've because I had an ankle bothering me.
Sunday we grabbed some breakfast at the con suite before getting our personal belongings out of the room. Because of the extreme heat, I brought some personal belongings into the dealers' room that we usually would've left in the van, particularly our cooler with food in it.
Sales were still rather slow, so we started packing a little early. Then my husband discovered that another dealer was selling off books really cheap. So he starts buying stuff we want to add to our stock, until I'm getting concerned about just how much he's getting. We were pretty full when we came, and we hadn't sold that much of our merchandise, so we didn't want to discover we didn't have enough room for these new acquisitions and have to abandon something. And even if everything fit, I wasn't sure how well the van would handle the extra load in this heat. We sure didn't need to be stuck by the side of the road with an overheated engine.
As it turned out, we got loaded fairly quickly and everything fit without too much trouble. So we made one very quick visit to the con suite to say our good-byes and then hit the road for home. We both remarked as we were crossing the bridge over the Ohio how we didn't take bridges for granted quite so much since the fall of that bridge in Minneapolis.
Copyright 2012 by Leigh Kimmel
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Last updated October 21, 2012.