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The One Ring Forums: Off Topic: TORn Moots & Other Events:
Chicago Map Moot Report
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a.s.
Valinor


Nov 5 2007, 3:17am

Post #1 of 35 (670 views)
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Chicago Map Moot Report Can't Post

Wow, I'm the first one reporting in?

I had a blast. It was wonderful to see everyone, most of whom I was meeting for the first time. Chicago is a wonderful town, of course we had way too short a time to visit.

The maps exhibit was wonderful. The special touch for all of us was, it goes without saying, the handrawn Tolkien maps. Thror's map, a handwritten working-out of the moon and sun phases for parts of the journey of the separated members of the Fellowship, and then the map of Minas Tirith with the gates indicated, etc. I spent a lot of time trying to decipher Tolkien's handwriting and pretty much gave up; several sibs were MUCH better at that than was I!

Entmaiden was the best hostess ever, superb! She went out of her way to make us comfortable, and Mrs. Maggot couldn't have set a better table. This morning we all went out for a last meal together and, well...let's just say if you're ever in Chicago and they tell you Laverne is your waitress and she'll be with you shortly, be very skeptical!

(We never actually saw Laverne. We suspect Laverne is a convenient fiction, but had a lot of fun talking about her anyway!)

I'm too tired to post much, but wanted to send a couple pictures:



Here's Gramma in Entmaiden's kitchen cooking up polenta!!



That's Deej, Greendragon, and Corvar toasting Torn (and the rest of us mooters).



Not the best lighting (hey, it's a camera-phone) but this is the outside of the spectacular Maori Meeting House which is inside the Field Museum. That's back views of Corvar (with hat), Deej, and Namadriel.



And finally, here is most of our group (Finding Frodo and Mr. FF had already left) posing inside Second City! Wow. That's (L-R) L. Ron, Corvar, Namadriel, Greendragon, Deej, Entmaiden, and Gramma).

OK! I'll be quiet now and let others report in. Entmaiden, thanks so much for a wonderul time. Everyone else, thanks as well. You were the best company anyone could ask for.

Corvar, especial thanks for chauffer duties above and beyond the call of duty.

a.s.

"an seileachan"

"Nothing that is worth doing can be achieved in our lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope. Nothing which is true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore we must be saved by faith. Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore we must be saved by love."
~~~Reinhold Niebuhr


dernwyn
Forum Admin / Moderator


Nov 5 2007, 3:46am

Post #2 of 35 (225 views)
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Oh, you lucky guys! [In reply to] Can't Post

You got to eat polenta, eh? Laugh

I don't know how you ever managed to get yourselves away from the hand-drawn maps. Those could be studied for hours on end! I'm so glad you all had the opportunity to examine them with all of you there; it's so much fun, doing something like that in a group!

Any "free samples"? Angelic

And a big thank-you hug to Entmaiden for being brave enough to be your host! Wink


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"I desired dragons with a profound desire"

"It struck me last night that you might write a fearfully good romantic drama, with as much of the 'supernatural' as you cared to introduce. Have you ever thought of it?"
-Geoffrey B. Smith, letter to JRR Tolkien, 1915


Kimi
Forum Admin / Moderator

Nov 5 2007, 8:03am

Post #3 of 35 (215 views)
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What a great gathering! [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm so glad you could be part of it.




Promises to Keep: a novel set in 19th Century New Zealand.

The Passing of Mistress Rose

Do we find happiness so often that we should turn it off the box when it happens to sit there?

- A Room With a View


Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea


Nov 5 2007, 5:18pm

Post #4 of 35 (227 views)
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Here's another one [In reply to] Can't Post

I hope this isn't too big. No time to edit this a.m.!

L-R: deej, greendragon, namadriel, gramma, me, L.Ron, a.s., Corvar, Entmaiden (hostess extraordinaire!)

Where's Frodo?


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Nov 5 2007, 5:21pm

Post #5 of 35 (183 views)
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Love the pictures! [In reply to] Can't Post

I'll try to post something tonight, but I have to fly to Orlando today for a week of internal meetings. Had an absolutely wonderful time!

Each cloak was fastened about the neck with a brooch like a green leaf veined with silver.
`Are these magic cloaks?' asked Pippin, looking at them with wonder.
`I do not know what you mean by that,' answered the leader of the Elves.


NARF since 1974.
Balin Bows


a.s.
Valinor


Nov 5 2007, 9:58pm

Post #6 of 35 (185 views)
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THERE you are!! :-) // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

"an seileachan"

"Nothing that is worth doing can be achieved in our lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope. Nothing which is true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore we must be saved by faith. Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore we must be saved by love."
~~~Reinhold Niebuhr


Corvar
PTB


Nov 5 2007, 10:31pm

Post #7 of 35 (187 views)
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Hey there [In reply to] Can't Post

I would guess you made it home all right, it was nice meeting you ;)


greendragon
Sr. Staff


Nov 5 2007, 11:52pm

Post #8 of 35 (186 views)
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Great report a.s.! [In reply to] Can't Post

L.Ron, Namadriel were the last to leave the moot, flying to our respective homes today and leaving poor entmaiden to head off for a week of travelling for work! Now I'm just between teaching a class and an evening meeting, so no time to write much but I will report in with more pics tomorrow! Meanwhile let me say that once again, mooting with TORnsibs was one of the most memorable weekends. Chicago is a fabulous city - my first time there, and it didn't disappoint! - entmaiden was indeed the hostess with the mostess, and it was FANTASTIC to spend time in the company of such wondrous people as a.s., gramma, deej, entmaiden, L.Ron, Corvar, namadriel, Finding Frodo and FF's most patient and charming husband! Laugh I'm still glowing with the pleasure of the entire weekend - and that glow is keeping me going inspite of a sequence of VERY late nights! {{hugs}} to you all - TORnsibs never cease to amaze me with their brilliance.

Pics and my report to follow!

'There are older and fouler things than orcs in the deep places of my fridge...'


a.s.
Valinor


Nov 5 2007, 11:54pm

Post #9 of 35 (218 views)
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actually I'm posting from a borrowed laptop at gate C5... [In reply to] Can't Post

no, JUST KIDDING!!!

Wink

a.s.

"an seileachan"

"Nothing that is worth doing can be achieved in our lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope. Nothing which is true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore we must be saved by faith. Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore we must be saved by love."
~~~Reinhold Niebuhr


Finding Frodo
Tol Eressea


Nov 6 2007, 3:00am

Post #10 of 35 (216 views)
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Yes, and it was so nice to meet you! [In reply to] Can't Post

Moots are wonderful for putting faces with names and making more personal connections. I haven't been to many moots, so it was my first real-life meeting with most of the 'sibs that were in Chicago this weekend. Some great memories:
  • the fabulous maps exhibit culminating with not only Tolkien's maps, but the delightful Land of Make-Believe map displayed nearby. I was really surprised by how much I enjoyed the whole exhibit, since I have a poor sense of direction and tend to be a poor navigator myself.
  • The Maori meeting house in the background of the photos. This is something else I was not particularly keen to see, but it blew me away with its eerie beauty and majesty. In the video that played there, one of the descendents of the Maori who originally built the house described her people as full of love and wanting to share it, and it certainly gave a warm feeling to those of us TORnies that gathered around.
  • Entmaiden's terrific dinner featuring chicken with bacon and mushrooms. Yum!
  • sitting around Entmaiden's lovely living room before, during, and after dinner discussing Tolkien, Jackson, LotR stars, the LotR musical, the Hobbit movie, and on and on and on. (Though we missed Anne, who unfortunately had to spend a great deal of time on conference calls for work.)
  • learning how Corvar chose his name!Wink

I don't know if I'll be able to return for the second moot in January, but I will if at all possible!

Where's Frodo?


deej
Tol Eressea


Nov 6 2007, 11:59pm

Post #11 of 35 (181 views)
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As greendragon would say [In reply to] Can't Post

"AMAZING!!" Wink


It was such a great weekend - the only bad part was having to say goodbye to everyone on Sunday. I've said it before, but i'll say it again - TORn-sibs really are some of the kindest people in the world.

***group hug***

Sincerely, deej - The Artist Formerly Known as djdeathskiss


drogo
Lorien


Nov 7 2007, 3:43am

Post #12 of 35 (165 views)
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Looks like you had a blast [In reply to] Can't Post

That map exhibit sounds wonderful, and glad you all had a fun time at Second City too.


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Nov 7 2007, 4:10am

Post #13 of 35 (202 views)
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Gosh, that was fun [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't have any pictures, but here's my report.

Greendragon and LRon arrived on Thursday evening, and I met them at LRon's hotel about 8:30. We were all hungry, so we walked 1 block to Gino's East, a Chicago pizza institution. I was determined to show everyone the best of Chicago all weekend, and one of the best ways to do that is through our pizza. Pizza is a BIG deal in Chicago, and Gino's (http://featuredfoods.com/...sffd4d9d4+1194419607) claims to be one of the first to serve our signature deep dish pizza. LRon got to pick the toppings and he and I shared a cheeseburger pizza. Greendragon went with another Chicago favorite, Italian Beef (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_Beef).

Friday morning I had to go into work until about 3 pm. and LRon and greendragon went off for a day of sightseeing. Along the way they met Namidriel who landed in the morning. I arrived back at my place to wait for gramma, who was due about 4 or 5. She arrived without mishap and we unloaded her car and got it parked safely (I did the parallel parking!).

The plan was to have dinner at my place on Friday so all the arrivals had a central meeting place and we could all visit with each other without the hassle of a restaurant. Deej, a.s. and Corvar arrived about 8:30 and our party was complete, at least so far. That evening found all of us finding seated around the living room, eating lasagna and drinking LOTS of champagne, catching up on news, and of course gossiping about TORN! We had a great start to the weekend and polished off a magnum of champagne.

Saturday morning was a slow start with 5 of us sharing 2 bathrooms, but we were ready to hit the road (or the bus system!) to the Field Museum by 9:30. The Maps exhibit was amazing, showing the historical and cultural effects of cartography. There were many favorites, including Lindbergh's map across the Atlantic, the Map the the Land of Make Believe and a 300-foot Buddhist map. Of course the highlight was three drawings from the Marquette archives. I had the pleasure of watching gramma see the Professor's handiwork for the first time. She entered the room, looked at the other exhibits, glance toward JRRTs work (she didn't recognize it at first) then finally fix on an early version of Thror's map. I got tears in my eyes the first time I saw JRRT's hand-written text, and the tears came back again this time to see how it affected gramma. She was smiling through her tears. Finding Frodo and Mr. FF joined us, and it was great to see both of them.

We didn't leave the Field Museum until 5. I missed the Maori Meeting House because of a $%^$$%_#$@$# conference call for work, but we did get a group shot that you've seen already. Then it was back to my condo for dinner. Some of us took the bus and the rest walked through Grant Park and the new, fabulous Millenium Park. Everyone who walked fell in love with the Bean, or Cloud Gate, an amazing sculpture by Anish Kappoor (http://www.millenniumpark.org/...ture/cloud_gate.html).

We had dinner and basically repeated Friday night's festivities, with a little more champagne, wine and beer. We had originally planned to go out for Karaoke, but decided early on we were having more fun with each other and decided to stay in. Fortunately greendragon had brought a LOTR game, and the whole gang played while I had to do ANOTHER STUPID CONFERENCE CALL! (honestly, this was a first that I had not one, but two conference calls on a weekend day.) The evening ended with some girl-talk after everyone left.

Sunday morning was time for a lie-in. Although gramma and I were the usual early birds, everyone else took advantage of not having a deadline to sleep in. We were all mobile by about 10:30 and went to a local diner for breakfast. That's where the famous, or infamous, LaVerne came into play. After waiting fruitlessly for 25 minutes to place our orders, we were told that "LaVerne" would be right out to take our order. LaVerne never showed, and the person who finally appeared to take our order promptly disappeared. 20 minutes later we learned that our order had gotten lost (no doubt by the invisible LaVerne) so we had to order again. At this point, the whole process became a battle of wills, and we were determned to wait it out to get our food. It finally did arrive, unlike LaVerne, and we did get a 25% discount.

The worst part of the weekend had arrived - the good-byes. First it was Finding Frodo and her husband, then gramma, a.s., deej and Corvar, until finally we were down to greendragon, LRon and Namidriel, all who were leaving on Monday. We walked around my neighborhood, which is landmarked property, then went back to my condo where I had ANOTHER ^$_%#_%#% CONFERENCE CALL. Namidriel and greendragon took advantage of the break for a brief nap and LRon watched football. We took a last walk for pizza at Edwardo's, then said good-bye to LRon. Greendragon, Namidriel and I went back to my condo for a final chat about Harry Potter book 7 (finishing a conversation that greendragon and I had started last June at Altaira's house).

Everyone left on Monday, including me, who flew out to Orlando for some internal work meetings. My place is a mess, I'm sure, and I'll be doing laundry this weekend, but it was again an incredible weekend with TORNadoes. We always have such a great time.

We're planning another mini-Moot in January - details to come! The Map exhibit is still open and we can do this all over again. Can't wait!

Each cloak was fastened about the neck with a brooch like a green leaf veined with silver.
`Are these magic cloaks?' asked Pippin, looking at them with wonder.
`I do not know what you mean by that,' answered the leader of the Elves.


NARF since 1974.
Balin Bows

(This post was edited by entmaiden on Nov 7 2007, 4:11am)


namadriel
Lorien


Nov 7 2007, 5:34am

Post #14 of 35 (216 views)
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I love Chicago! And tornsibs!!! [In reply to] Can't Post

I had such a wonderful time in Chicago! It was great to meet so many new people, and see again some of the ones I'd met at Dragon*Con. I can definitely see how mooting is addictive. When is the next one?

I think the rest of you pretty much covered all the activities in your reports. It was so much fun! Even the Laverge incident was something to laugh about. Once we got our food and stopped eyeing leftovers on the other tables, of course. And entmaident was indeed the best hostess ever! Thank you soooo much!

Maybe I'll write a little more later, but right now I'm utterly exhausted. I only got back to my apartment a couple of hours ago. I had some madness with the travelling yesterday. After a 4-hour layover in St. Louis, we finally took off to Nashville. And just before we got there, the Nashville airport closed because a massive storm knocked out the power. So we headed right back to St. Louis. After a bit of sitting and waiting to see what would happen, our flight was cancelled. So I was rebooked on the 9 pm flight. Made it into Nashville around 10. Thought they had lost my luggage (wouldn't that have been the topper?), but they had stuck it in an office. And driving out of the airport, I took a wrong turn and ended up quite misplaced in some Nashville suburbs. I finally managed to get myself headed in the right direction to get home. By this time, I was completely exhausted and frazzled. It would be a 2-hour drive home, plus an hour later due to time zones. So I stopped and stayed in a motel. Then I drove to work from there this morning. Quite an exhausting ordeal.

But now I'm home and can sleep in my own bed. The cat seems quite happy to see me. She's been sleeping in my lap for the last hour.

Besides the crazy-long travel day yesterday, the trip was fantastic! Fun times, great company, excellent food... Could I ask for anything more?


FantasyFan
Rohan


Nov 7 2007, 1:24pm

Post #15 of 35 (174 views)
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Sounds like a lovely time [In reply to] Can't Post

I have fond memories of a Chicago moot several years ago. Wish I could have been on this one too. It sounds like a very good time was had by all.


"That is one thing that Men call 'hope.' Amdir we call it, 'looking up.' But there is another which is founded deeper. Estel we call it, that is 'trust.' It is not defeated by the ways of the world, for it does not come from experience, but from our nature and First Being. If we are indeed the Eruhin, the Children of the One, then He will not suffer Himself to be deprived of His own, not by any enemy, not even by ourselves. This is the last foundation of estel, which we keep even when we contemplate the End. Of all His designs the issue must be for His children's joy."
Finrod, Athrabeth Finrod ah Andreth, HoME X Morgoth's Ring



greendragon
Sr. Staff


Nov 7 2007, 7:24pm

Post #16 of 35 (220 views)
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Oh namadriel!! Poor you! [In reply to] Can't Post

What nightmare journey! You must have been totally knackered by the time you finally arrived in Nashville - I'm not surprised you felt the need to crash at a motel! I know I was tired enough by the time I finished my final meeting around 10.30pm that night - so goodness knows how you felt after all that travelling! Glad you got home safely eventually!

And it's great to see a pic of your boat in your avatar! Now I can picture you braving the waves! Wink Hope the rest of your week goes smoothly.

'There are older and fouler things than orcs in the deep places of my fridge...'


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Nov 9 2007, 11:17am

Post #17 of 35 (164 views)
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*applause* That was fun! [In reply to] Can't Post

Great pics, a.s.! I'm still working on my report. This week has been NUTS!

Cripes I had SUCH a great time. Entmaiden was the definitive hostess, and hanging with some of the most awesome people on the planet was such a joy. *waves to fellow mooters* You guys are FANTASTIC!!!



sample sample
Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."


TORn's Observations Lists

My DragonCon 07 Report


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Nov 9 2007, 11:20am

Post #18 of 35 (136 views)
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Excellent Picture! [In reply to] Can't Post

The detail of the house is more apparent than what my ancient camera could handle! THANK YOU!!! :D

I hope Mr. FF had a good fun! I think he must have sometimes looked around at that motley crew and just shook his head. *snigger* I love it when that happens ;)

Tell him HOWDY for me!



sample sample
Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."


TORn's Observations Lists

My DragonCon 07 Report


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Nov 9 2007, 11:34am

Post #19 of 35 (137 views)
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*heaving sigh amid applause* Glorious! [In reply to] Can't Post

You captured it all, m'dear. What a fabulous time we had; and it was all thanks to your generosity and planning! I was staggered by how much you'd thought out every meal, every arrangement, right down to making sure there was proper milks in the fridge ;)

You've given me opportunities to experience so many things that I'd have never had the chance to even dream about otherwise. I'll be eternally grateful for that; and for your selfless friendship. You're a jewel and such a great Lady. For all you've done for me and for all of us, heart-felt Thanks.

And, uhhh... is there any ice cream left?


{{{entmaiden}}}Heart



sample sample
Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."


TORn's Observations Lists

My DragonCon 07 Report


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Nov 9 2007, 11:37am

Post #20 of 35 (136 views)
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How Awful!! [In reply to] Can't Post

After the late nights (and early mornings), you must have been bouncing off the walls with fatigue! I'd have been in tears by the time I got lost in the burbs after all those hours dealing with airlines!

I'm glad you finally made it home. It was SO great to see you again. You're a perfect roommate! :D And I'm glad you got some Chicago Pizza before you left!

{{namadriel}}



sample sample
Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."


TORn's Observations Lists

My DragonCon 07 Report


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Nov 9 2007, 11:40am

Post #21 of 35 (151 views)
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There's another one coming up! [In reply to] Can't Post

IIRC, entmaiden has plans for another one very soon. If you can at all make it, do so! It's fabulous, and entmaiden lives in a neighborhood with the BEST Chicago personality you could wish for!



sample sample
Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."


TORn's Observations Lists

My DragonCon 07 Report


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Nov 10 2007, 2:58am

Post #22 of 35 (162 views)
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*snert* [In reply to] Can't Post

Those milks! She's just lucky I had tea, or maybe I'm the lucky one who didn't have to go searching for tea at the grocery story at 9 pm!

Each cloak was fastened about the neck with a brooch like a green leaf veined with silver.
`Are these magic cloaks?' asked Pippin, looking at them with wonder.
`I do not know what you mean by that,' answered the leader of the Elves.


NARF since 1974.
Balin Bows


Smeagirl/Girllum
Gondor


Nov 10 2007, 3:23am

Post #23 of 35 (139 views)
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Awesome reports! I'm so glad you guys had fun! [In reply to] Can't Post

I always wondered how Tolkien worked out the moon-phases thing -- that must've been interesting to see his notes.

I hope I'll be able to join you in a future moot. I've never been to Chicago that I can recall.


grammaboodawg
Immortal


Nov 16 2007, 8:38pm

Post #24 of 35 (381 views)
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Finally! Here's my Map Moot report *takes a deep breath* // [In reply to] Can't Post

Late, as usual; but it took forever for me to just SIT and type! So here goes:

As soon as Entmaiden mentioned this exhibit, I HAD to get there! It had also grown into a fabulous moot! What blew my mind was that at the same time entmaiden was finishing the logistics for Daniel Reeve's map deliveries and helping all of us make sure our orders were in, she was opening her city and her home to not one moot but two! Those of us who could only make it in November and again in January for those who could go after the holidays. BOOM! MAP MOOT 1 and MAP MOOT 2!!!

Entmaiden pointed out something interesting to me. I wasn't as stressed about this moot as the day drew near like I normally do when it's close to the time to leave. It was because I wasn't dealing the train or planes, but automobiles only! I was driving to this one. *relieved sigh* EMPOWERED to come and go as I please with no deadline but to arrive in Chicago as near to the appointed time as I could! It also made it possible for me to help with some minor logistics. Entmaiden was playing Butterbur to several of us, so I was able to bring along some extra pillows and blankets. I also brought along some trail mix with a gummy worm for our expedition. I made sure I had my ticket and headed down the road!

Entmaiden gave me some very clear directions to her home; but, as usual, I was quite challenged by part of them. Head north on west I94 then go east on north. huh? I planned to call her when I got into the Chicago area, but I was trapped in traffic where everyone knew where they were going and in a hurry to get there! So I hung on and ran with the pack, unable to haul out my phone and try to dial. I was tickled at one point when I looked over and saw myself next to the Enterprises' shuttlecraft - Galileo! Wow! Cool! So, I couldn't deal with the phone, but I could snag a couple of shots of that very stellar car!


The very funny part was that I went east on north 6 lights (not counting the broken one) and was driving right past entmaiden's building when she called to see how I was coming along! "HELP!" *snigger* That was so fated. She came down and saved me as we unloaded the car and went hunting for a parking spot; and I was delighted to let her do the driving, the hunting and the parking! We took off my license plate and hid it in the trunk after leaving a parking permit in the window. She foresaw that someone would see that 'hobbity' plate and adopt it for their very own.

I felt so badly for her neighbours across the hall. You have to buzz for permission to enter her building; and some of us seemed challenged to misinterpret the condo numbers and buzzed the wrong place… usually those neighbours. At first they were very understanding, bless 'em :)

What a gorgeous, welcoming home entmaiden has! She'd just moved in this past summer, and the location, feel and character of that area is so inviting! It also flipped me out to see that she was within a couple of blocks of the famous "Second City" where many of the Saturday Night Live alums first practiced their craft. Entmaiden told me that John Belushi actually lived in the building right next to hers! We walked to a nearby grocery store to get a few necessities (like Ice Cream!) and made our way back after I stopped for the evening's paper with this ad in it!

Very soon our sibs began to arrive and, as entmaiden said, we dined and drank (yes... I had some champagne!) and chattered, laughed and delighted in being together and what was to come! It was the first time in years that deej, greendragon, L.Ron, entmaiden and I were mooting together; but it didn't seem like any time had passed at all! Sibs fersher! But now we had expanded to Corvar, a.s., Finding Frodo & Mr. FF, and Namadriel. We also received a treasure from Aunt Dora Baggins of the Adventures of Altaira and the Map ;)

Oh geez! The morning of the Field Museum adventure had finally arrived! We each were up and ready and out the door to catch the metro to the museum! Just a couple of short blocks away on a Brilliantly Beautiful day, we waited for the #6 bus! Or was it 146? I know it had a 6 in it! Anyway... Partway there, we had to switch buses. We walked along the elevated train (el), which anyone who has watched The Blues Brothers or While You Were Sleeping would get a kick out of! The iron work on them is gorgeous! I also snapped a shot of another landmark from the passing bus.


Then, we were there! The Field Museum! But before we ventured within, first-things-first. There's was a Chicago Hotdog Stand right there waiting for us! I didn't get a chance to get some pizza, but I wouldn't go dogless. So we descended on the innocent vendor trapped in this tiny stand. Then I did the unspeakable. I requested ketchup on my hotdog. Apparently close to a sin to "true" residents. I outted myself as an obvious tourist. *sigh* So be it. I put ketchup on my hotdog and drink pop to wash it down ;) I'll tell you what though; that doggie was delicious!

We made our way into the museum where we waited for entmaiden to iron out a problem with her ticket, and for Corvar to arrive. We agreed to meet at the map exhibit, so I grabbed my map of the museum and we headed out!




It just so happens that the 2 exhibits we were the most anxious to see were on the same floor. To find them, if you look at this map of the exhibit locations, you'll find an itty-bitty map of NZ next to the Maori Meeting House and a picture of our Professor next to the Map Exhibit. I've also put red splotches there to accent them.

As soon as we entered the exhibit area, we finally met up with Finding Frodo and Mr. FF and Corvar appeared at the same time! Now the moot was complete :) I had no idea what we were in for. There are over 100 maps, but not just images. There are landscape models of maps, matching globes of landmasses and of the constellations, nautical tools (sextants, compasses, etc.), and many maps of various areas of countries around the world. So many of the charts were from hundreds of years ago presenting innovative or intuitive vision by their creators.


What was so nice was that we each felt free to walk around and take in the maps at our own pace. We were comfortable enough with each other not to feel like we had to approach each piece en-mass, although we were always in close proximity with one another to share ooo-ahhh moments... of which there were MANY! One that we all seemed to linger with is The Land of Make Believe.

Another was Charles Lindbergh's 1927 hand-marked map used when he flew the Spirit of St. Louis from New York to Paris. To really appreciate this particular chart/map, check out these 2 articles on what Lindbergh faced in his preparation and actual experience for this flight. It was amazing to see the actual map he used to mark his course every 100 miles. He incorporated exceptional planning, pilotage, and dead reckoning. Since there wasn't a transatlantic aviation map available, he adapted shipping charts.

Lindbergh divided the flight path into 100-mile segments (approximating 1-hour between) and transferred the coordinates and magnetic heading to his map. He flew as low as 20 feet over the water, observing the waves to determine the drift correction. He was only six miles off course as he made landfall at Nova Scotia and projected this error to be less than 50 miles when he reached Ireland. He was within 3 miles of the southern tip of Ireland upon his arrival and then continued his course to Paris, which he reached after covering 3,150 nautical miles in 33.5 hours after a sleepless night. [info gleaned from these articles]

But, it was time to move along. I don't believe this is one of the maps displayed (so many to remember), but this is very similar to some that were there and I couldn't help but think of Curious when I saw any with figures blowing winds from various directions :)

The sort of surprises you'll find include: the 1926 map of Winnie-the-Pooh's Hundred Acre Wood; the 1883 map of Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island; a 1766 jigsaw puzzle of a map of Europe; Leonardo DaVinci's Arno River Florence 1504 depicting the flowing water Arnor River; and a 1508 World Map by Rosselli, the first map to show the entire globe. It shows a mythical southern continent is shown, and ocean areas are much too small, yet it is a true world map.

There was also a time-lapse projected map of the Civil War battle lines showing the movement of the North and the South over the 5-year war. At the same time, there was a running count of the number of causalities. This was a very sobering depiction of the impact of that war on the lands and the incredible loss of life.


I finally made my way to the 3 hand-written pages by J.R.R. Tolkien. As soon as I fixed on the first image, I froze. My brain shut down and I was stunned. There they were! Entmaiden appeared out of nowhere smiling and excited, and I cried. We looked at each page, every detail, tried to decipher Tolkien's writing… it was enchanted joy. They were mounted almost too high for me to see, so I was standing tip-toed and straining to get close and absorb every inch of each page. It probably would have been easier to see if my eyes stopped leaking. I also needed a magnifying glass!

One sheet was done circa 1944 of a topographical view of Minas Tirith; the next was circa 1930 of Thror's Map for The Hobbit; and the third was circa 1943-44 of an incredible page of notes on the times and distances (a chronology) for the Fellowship during one day. Each of these had the Professor's handwriting covering the page. I could have spent hours… seriously!... just pouring over these. Entmaiden has been trying to get me to Marquette to see more of Tolkien's original works; so now I'm eager and terrified to go! Meltdown is the first word that comes to mind. Others were also anxious to stand in front of these treasures; so I was forced to move on. Plus, my Moot Fellowshippers were beginning to collect at this final leg of this timed-exhibit. *sigh* Magic. We were there from just before 11am until they closed at 5pm!

I found this pdf list of displays of the exhibit. It doesn't have any pictures, but you can see the incredible collection offered. So many of the maps were leaps ahead of their time in history.


Just as emotional and meaningful as seeing Professor Tolkien's works was visiting the Maori Meeting House. I'm so glad Corvar encouraged us to visit this as well. It felt like hallowed ground and a building blessed; which it was! The history of this building was as incredible as its final resting place in this larger building. This wall displays the importance and culture of the Maori Meeting House and the journey of this specific House from where it began to finding its place here.

After removing our shoes, we went inside. There are so many details from the weaving in the walls to the paintings of the ceiling ribs (the shark eye, Namadriel) to the front pole and back pole supporting the roof; the entire building tells the tale of friendship, acceptance and the heart of the Maori people.

There were other artifacts to enjoy and a welcomed place to rest. They also had a video of the history of this House, which included over 60 Maori elders and tribal leaders who came to bless and honour the structure and its new home within the Field Museum.

The hardest part of our time at the museum was entmaiden's work-related conference call. While unavoidable, it cut into her time at the Maori House and lasted twice as long as she'd anticipated. She made it there just minutes before the museum closed.

I was one of the sibs that took the bus ride back to entmaiden's digs; which turned into a fascinating adventure. There was drama (irate traveller); intrigue (Kiwi family asking directions); and beauty (architecturally splendiferous buildings)! We made it back in time to throw yet another awesome pre-cooked dinner (a la entmaiden) into the oven. What was incredible about the weekend was how much she'd thought ahead and prepared everything we could possibly need; which is a pretty awesome accomplishment given the variety of characters she was entertaining! *wild applause* You Rock, m'dear!! :D

Now... you want to talk drama? You should have been there to play greendragon's Lord of the Rings board game. After she attacked the instructions (typically encumbered and confusing), we split up into teams of 2 and had at it! Strategy and dumb luck, that's all you needed. All I know is that I'm glad that I was teamed with Namadriel. She was awesome! Through greendragon's vigilance and "rule" guidance, we pressed on with perplexed determination. We all moaned when we landed on red. The bane of the game! We all lost, so we improvised and changed it around a bit so at least one of us could win. Hey a.s.! Didn't you rule as champion!? I have to admit, buy the end it was WAY past my bedtime (as it happened the night before), so I was a little foggy by then ;)


Ah… Sunday. As the others have already said, it was a lazy start as we re-gathered the troops and headed out for elevensies. It was another GORGEOUS day! We knew many of us would need to make noise about leaving soon, so we were determined to have one more meal together. The restaurant staff were as outrageous as everyone says. I used to waitress, so I know the workload, stresses, and demands of waiting tables. All of these people missed the mark. One who was obviously seasoned and had her awareness antenna up did finally set things right for us; but the mumble-cursing, trying-but-couldn't-do-it, invisible LaVerne combo we were confronted with left me speechless. There was also the moment when greendragon felt something dripping onto her leg only to find some previous patron's syrup had finally worked through the joint in the table and dribbled onto her lap. The food was good, though; and I'd been very hungry for quesadillas for a long time. Yummmmmm :) We left very late, but I scored a promise from greendragon for her recipe for the bodacious shortbread she'd made for us! More yummmmmm!

On our way back from elevensies, we stopped in at the Second City Improv Club and found the doors open! Well... naturally, we just walked in! We looked around the main floor lobby and then ventured up to the second floor. There were a set of doors to the theatre and a bar. The place was very small inside, but the walls and stairwell were cover with fantastic pictures of the performers throughout the years. There were a couple of people there who were great about letting us look around. Before leaving, we stopped for a group shot of our own.

It was way past the time I felt I should get on the road so I wouldn't be travelling through deer-infested freeways of western Michigan too much after dark. The worse part of any moot is here, the inescapable end where we say goodbye. Entmaiden escorted me to where she parked my car, we replaced my license plate, and I was on my way. Thank you SO MUCH entmaiden for giving me yet another unforgettable memory. It's with complete fondness and much appreciation that I say to each of you, "Farewell my friends, until we moot again." HUGS!





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Trust him... The Hobbit is coming!

"Barney Snow was here." ~Hug like a hobbit!~ "In my heaven..."


TORn's Observations Lists

My DragonCon 07 Report

(This post was edited by grammaboodawg on Nov 17 2007, 2:19pm)


a.s.
Valinor


Nov 16 2007, 10:33pm

Post #25 of 35 (148 views)
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"winning" is surely an exaggeration :-) [In reply to] Can't Post

   

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We all lost, so we improvised and changed it around a bit so at least one of us could win. Hey a.s.! Didn't you rule as champion!?




I mean, you said it correctly: we all lost...then we figured out a way to keep playing (well, greendragon figured it out for us, I believe she was the only one who really had a handle on the directions!), so then I won that round. But I really think it was just time to end the game and everyone would have been happy no matter who won, at that point!!

LOL

GREAT report, gramma! How did you EVER get your car down out of that tree, though?

Wink

a.s.

"an seileachan"

Forgiveness means giving up all hope of a better past.
~~~Landrum Bolling

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