May 20 2013, 5:29pm
Can't believe that several weeks have passed since my last instalment of this saga but things have been hectic, busy, painful (my feet have been killing me ever since doing a stall at a fleamarket on May 1st), but my memories are still very much present and giving me joy...
HobbitCon impressions, part four
Where was I? Oh yes, Sunday afternoon just about to go downstairs for the Game Show. It would take way too much time to describe that event in detail. Dean O'Gorman had told me at the autograph session that he had no idea what was in store for him there, and that was quite obvious when he and the three other participants (Mark Hadlow, who paired up with D., and Stephen Hunter making up the second team with Jed Brophy) arrived on stage and were set different tasks by Mark Ferguson the MC. Although I still don't care much for the latter, he did a good job as Master of Ceremonies. The two teams had to use their improvisational skills, answer questions relating to Tolkien's Middle-earth, and tell stories with the other team having to determine whether the story in question was true or a lie --- utterly hilarious! Then Graham McTavish came on for his solo panel, and he, too, proved to be very charming and funny, and quite unlike Dwalin. Rosie and Laguz wrote about this, too, so I'll leave it at that.
This pretty much concluded the official programme for Sunday, and the rest of the evening was 'party in the Foyer' and a concert in the main auditorium by a band called 'Harpo Speaks!!). The girls and I met down in the Foyer and spent some time having drinks, chatting and enthusing over the day's events; Rosie retired fairly early but the rest of us remained there for several hours still. The DJ's choice of music got on my nerves after a while so I went to check out the band, and was most agreeably surprised. They did a lot of old songs but with a new interpretation, and then a rendition of Enya's 'May it be' (from FotR) which gave me goosebumps, it was that good. So I went back to find the others in order to tell them, and for a while they came, too, but the music then became too much classic rock and funky interpretations of same, and there I realised that being older than them by a generation really did make a difference. Anyway, we went back to the Foyer, got fresh drinks, and went a little crazy on the dance floor (I'll spare you the details ), enjoying ourselves tremendously. Who says you can't have fun drinking only passionfruit juice?! It had been a really gloriously wonderful day and night, and I was still awake at 2.30 in the morning, making notes and trying to come back down to earth.
The next morning at breakfast I shared a table with an older woman who turned out to live in the same town I do, quite a coincidence. She was more interested in the German language events (and there were lots of those, too). I went to check out Daniel Falconer's and Paul Tobin's presentation on the Weta collectibles, then returned to my room to prepare the envelope for Mark Hadlow with the money I'd raised at a fleamarket last spring for Christchurch and which he was kindly taking back to NZ and to a bank there. Such a delightful man, is Mark! Made it back downstairs in time for the panel with Adam Brown and Jed Brophy which also was immensely entertaining. During this panel I did ask a question, namely would there be an audiocommentary done by the actors for the EE dvds since I imagined if the two of them were involved in that it would certainly be hilarious? Much cheering from the audience for my question, and even more cheering when Jed said that yes, there would be, and that they had already recorded some of it. Yay! Something else to look forward to! Then there were two more of these 'double' panels, first Graham McTavish with Mark Hadlow, which also was very funny, then John Callen with Peter Hambleton who talked a fair bit about the relationship between the brothers, and a bit of Gimli, and also mentioned the lack of proper distance between some member(s?) of the Dwarves and an Elf in film 2. Well, we shall see... Right afterwards there was the Closing Ceremony where some of the skills people had learned in various workshops offered throughout the weekend were now shown on the stage, very impressive, dancing and fighting and so on. The lady who had taught calligraphy (Tengwar, among other things) and given a lecture, then sang a song (in English) she had written for Gil-galad the king of the High Elves in the Second Age, very beautiful it was. All the artists, workshop teachers, and actors came on stage one by one, to say goodbye, 'our' actors saying how much they had enjoyed HobbitCon and us fans, and would come back if possible for another one. And delighted everyone by gathering round a microphone for a rendition of the Misty Mountains song, as already described by Rosie. What a lovely way to end the Closing Ceremony!
And then it was officially over --- a very bittersweet feeling! Immense gratitude and joy for having been privileged to be there, and sadness and a feeling almost of bereavement that this magical weekend was suddenly at an end. Well, not quite at an end for some of us staying over until next morning. I had still to give said envelope to Mark Hadlow, and when I did, he gave me a signed CD of his 'Tall Tales Classic Kid's Stories - with a Kiwi twist' (now 'my precious', one of my treasures!). I was so astonished that I feigned falling over backwards in a faint, which so alarmed Akanarichan who was with me at the time that she ended up accompanying me to my room after we'd said goodbye to Mark, and spending a couple of hours with me making sure I was alright and not about to collapse! Rosie had left quite soon after the Closing Ceremony, but Laguz and Autumn returned to the Maritim later that evening to meet up with us again and spend a last (and quiet, in comparison) evening with us in the bar. Then they departed, and just as Laguz had predicted, they had hardly been gone ten minutes when those of the actors who hadn't yet left returned from having dinner somewhere else. L. and A. had charged Aka and me with messages and farewell greetings for some of the actors so of course it was our bounden duty to do so . That's how we came to end up talking first with John Callen and then with Peter Hambleton for quite a while until after midnight, I think --- can't decipher my notes). What a good day this, too, had been!
The next morning, Tuesday April 2nd, Aka and I met at breakfast and then she had to leave, and I had to pack, and quit the hotel by noon (just barely made it), still in a daze....
(better save post this before it vanishes)