Sunday, July 23, 2006

Wonders of Irn Bru

I don't need to say more, do I? Except that Anne, I too will continue preparing for Bouchercon. Such a hardship, I know...

I typed a blog post twice at Killer Year on Friday, only to lose it both times to computer woes at the internet cafe. At that point, I was convinced that tragedy was following me and in the interests of others, I should just get the hell out of there. At that point, I went to deal with my cell phone, which had a large amount of messages received stating things like, 'Find me a guy with a **** or sorry, hell, maybe a girl' and 'That's the point of grapefruit.' I'm still trying to work the last one out.

Now, I'm not going to do a full recap here and now, and I'll skip over Tuesday and the wine consumption and go straight to Wednesday morning. Marsha and I were up early and off to Edinburgh - oh wait. We stayed in Edinburgh. Note to some people - if you can close the distance in under a quarter of an hour on a city bus, you aren't far away. I mean, seriously: travel in Canada.

So what I mean is, we went downtown and did our wandering. Through the gardens and up past Fleshmarket Close, to the castle, did the Mary King's Close tour (which was a repeat for me from last year but a first for Marsha and still interesting) and we did some souvenir shopping. We saw a bunch of other things that escape me at the moment. The most significant thing was that we went to meet up with the that guy from Dundee. I've since been admonished for saying he has a Dundee accent - he insists it's Fife, but I think he's just trying to claim common ground to some of the greatest Scottish crime writers. After all, that's why Stuart married a gal from Fife, I'm sure. His own lineage sadly lacking.

We were a bit delayed meeting up with Russel McLean - yes, the Russel D. McLean of Crime Scene Scotland and the These Are Mean Streets blog (sorry for the lack of links guys - strange computer, don't have my blog roll handy). Russel fell asleep on the bus and was booted off. Fortunately not on the other side of the city, and we linked up before long.

We had a great afternoon. Went to The Ox for a drink. Except I stayed with coke. My head felt better, but still. You have to pace yourself. Had dinner too, and I must say that, as the first time I was meeting someone off the blogs in person, I couldn't have asked for a better person to link up with. And there will be pictures, stories, and more about what really happened with the cop and the statue of the foot another time.

I haven't delved straight into the Harrogate experience, because I want to do it justice. And right now, I wouldn't. I nodded off for about an hour on the drive from Harrogate to Manchester (thanks for the lift, James!) but otherwise haven't used a bed since Friday night* and am a wee bit knackered. See what happens when you come to the UK - your speech is corrupted.

Anyway, a few quickies...

Jan - hope your writing has been going well. Seeing your comment made me wonder what's going on with the crime lab project and I look forward to catching up.

Elizabeth, Sue, Bill, Bonnie, James G, DesLily... Thanks, all of you, and I look forward to finding out what you've been up to! Hope you've been behaving.

I could hope Mindy, Angie and Brett would behave, but why bother wasting energy, right? Might explain something about the cute single guys and international phone calls to do web searches for information I won't discuss here. But it might also explain some of the text messages I got. Especially the one about the hairy chest. And I must say I have no idea.

Erik, not too worry. And if you can't stay s... have fun and get photos.

Amra: pictures will be posted soon!

Forty_Two, those people are a bit too wild for my blog. Dirty jokes are one thing, but they're a bit obscene, don't you think?

'With all the Scotsmen running around in kilts' I'm going to need luck? More like I need to be unlucky. You and Erik need to work out if I'm supposed to be lucky or stay s... on these sojourns.

Oh, and EvilKev, I was joking about not sleeping. Absolutely. When I phoned you at what? 10 pm your time from the bar, I went straight to bed. There's no way I had an animated debate about the merits of reviews (or lack thereof) and started smooching beer from the bar when the hotel staff weren't looking.


But I did discover that after you've let a man keep you up all night you shouldn't say, 'One more for good measure.' Just, not a good idea.

Seriously guys, I can't believe it's over. The festival flew by. It was a bit sad, really. Being booked for (ahem) other things I can't really go public on yet, but that require me to be in New York this time next year, I'm not sure if that will conflict with Harrogate.

Although I made a deal with Simon Kernick that if he joined the ITW and went to Thrillerfest, I'd do Harrogate. We'd both suffer the effects of sobering up from one festival and jetlag and take in a second festival together. The thing is, Harrogate is such a great festival. Really, I'd be sad to miss it. Even the woman in the bookstore recognized me from last year.

And I hear there are great people lined up for next year, but I'll talk about that when I set feet back on Canadian soil.

Plus, I'll talk about Al Guthrie and masturbating hamsters. Once I deal with the video.

What a long, rambling post of nonsense. Guess I'm pacing myself...

But while you wait for my return I recommend heading to Stuart's to ask why he saw dawn on Friday in a strange man's room, listening to Pink Flag.

Enquiring minds and all that, Stuart.

And share some of the candies with She Who Must Suffer With A Non-Fifer.

Vincent - so glad we got time to chat. Oh, there will be a complete list - Steve, John, James, Vincent, Stuart, Betty, Helena, Jayne...damn, I'll have forgotten someone, so I need sleep before I do this. All my online chums who are as fantastic in the flesh as they are in cyberland. So glad we linked up.

Thanks again for the ride James.

* You people have filthy minds, you know that?


James Goodman said...

I would have to say I've behaved, but I've surely missed you around the ol' blogosphere. Welcome back!

anne frasier said...

eeny, meeny, miny, moe
we're thrilled that you're back
but we don't know where to go

David Terrenoire said...

Sometimes I think we go through all the pain of writing and publishing only so we can justify going to these events.

God bless 'em.

Oh, and welcome back.

Stephen Blackmoore said...

Glad you made it back in one piece. You've been missed. Next time we'll aim better.

"But I did discover that after you've let a man keep you up all night you shouldn't say, 'One more for good measure.'"

Obviously, you're hanging out with the wrong men.

JamesO said...

I'd just like to point out that it wasn't me who kept Sandra up all night. I just gave her a ride.

Bill Cameron said...

I behaved. I think. When we were in the woods over the weekend, at a couple of points I vaguely remembered my son saying, "You're having ANOTHER beer?" In my own defense, he says this when I open my first beer, even if it's been several days since my last beer. This weekend, however, he may have been on to something.

Patrick Shawn Bagley said...

Irn Bru? *gak* I'd rather eat a case of canned haggis than taste that nasty swill. Come to think of it, Coke's pretty foul too. Beer and whiskey, that's the stuff.

I'm truly jealous, Sandra, though if I were in Scotland, I'd be tempted to stay there for good.

mai wen said...

Glad your back and loved reading about your European adventures... it's gettine me excited for my trip, although it'll be in march of next year. Haha, well it's never too early to get excited, right?? Glad you had a good time! We missed you in blogosphere.

S. W. Vaughn said...

Woo hoo! Sandra's back!

*dances around doing a really crappy and slightly crooked Hokey Pokey*

Glad you had a good time!

angie said...

Sounds like you had an awesome, though sleep-deprived con. Glad you're back. It's been a little too quiet around here! Oh, and I behaved myself - you must be thinking of that OTHER Arizona lady who likes to telephonically harass her Canadian friends!