A few pictures.
We dropped our stuff in my room, and then headed out to find food. Carol had looked up nearby restaurants on her phone during the drive up, and confirmed that L'Orange Bleu was within walking distance. They opened at 5 and we were the first to arrive, we got a seat near a window and the contrast between the warm colours inside and the snow and dark outside was a strong on. I saw when we sat down that they only took AmEx and cash, so I ended up covering Carol's meal, which wasn't a problem as I had about twice as much as she did. :) The house salad was great (arugula, blue cheese, toasted almonds, blood orange), and the duck confit with lentils was amazing. The creme brulee was a bit too burnt, and upset my stomach briefly but that was the only off note. Back out into the snow and slush, to the hotel, where I set out my clothes for the evening while Carol took a shower. I gave up on the long skirt option, the sidewalks were a mess, going instead with a cream tiered lace mini skirt, brown pvc bustier, and a cream lace knee length jacket, plus a Velvet Mechanism choker and my patent leather flat soled boots to keep my feet dry, no way was I risking the nice leather high heeled boots to the salt and slush, plus the heel would be too much over the course of the night. I also clipped in the hair ornament that I bought at C15, and it stayed rock solid the whole night.
I had a quick wash, dressed, managed to apply makeup correctly the first time, and we were out the door to the venue at around 7:30 or so, getting there in time for Abney Park's first set at 8pm. It was awesome. :) I grabbed the three CDs they had on sale that I didn't own yet and just barely got them into my purse. Had a moment of seeing Alaric instead of Captain Robert, they're doppelgangers! I spotted TJ and Matt and said hi, and was at the right of the stage when the band came on, one row back, so I held onto my spot and revelled in the musical goodness coming at me. I'd grabbed the ear plugs from the hotel and was grateful for them! The band members are lovely, the venue was pretty small, and it felt very intimate. There was a new female vocalist, Jody, she had awesome stripped bloomers on. She wasn't a belly dancer like the former vocalist, but it was fun to watch her dance around on stage. There were a lot of neat outfits in the audience as well, and I was kicking myself for forgetting my camera. Nathaniel gets this incredibly happy look on his face when he's playing, it always draws a smile from me as well. I was on the side of the stage where Dan, the bassist, was hanging out, and I got to see all the tiny details on his bass and of his outfit (military steampunk is sexy!). Christina was mostly hidden by the awesome keyboard (dials! gears! flashy lights!), but I loved her stripy stockings + white fishnets. It was nice to see her get the spotlight when they played Victoria. Capt'n Robert, as always, was a joy to watch, he brought people up on stage to hold Nathaniel's violin when the song called for both guitar and violin. The organisers didn't end up kicking us out after that set, though I'd reclaimed my coat from coat check in anticipation of hanging out at a pub for the 45 minute break. I ended up just leaving it on a bench where we were sitting. Brian from SwingGoth California and his dance partner gave swing dance lessons to the crowd, but I didn't join in, watching the couples try to find space to move was entertaining enough. :) There were a few Alice in Wonderland and other Burton movie costumes, but it wasn't as crowded as I was expecting (guess the weather kept people away). There were a couple of performances based on Burton movies, and then Abney Park took the stage again and rocked out. They did some songs again but I didn't care, I loved them all. :) During Herr Drosselmeyer's Doll, Captain Robert asked everyone to waltz, so after couples formed up and I saw a pretty cybergoth without anyone to dance with, I asked her. Neither of us was very good, and it was crowded, but we had fun. :) At another point in the evening, I was dancing by myself and felt a tap on my shoulder, Brian from SwingGoth was holding out his hand for me to come dance with him. With some trepidation, I went, and he twirled, dipped, and lifted me in the space between the DJ booth and the sound booth. It was a lot of fun, the dips felt rock solid even though I'm sure my head came close to the floor - it makes a difference when the dipper knows what they're doing! The DJ(s) were spinning old school goth and some Burton soundtrack picks, I danced myself to dehydration, knee pain and exhaustion, it was great. :) Nathaniel and Christina and Jody were pretty tipsy and joined us on the dance floor for a while. At around 2am or so, Carol borrowed my room card and went to get her stuff from the hotel, and food. At around 3am I was about to tip over and so got ready to leave and find her when she returned and I got my room key back. Managed to not get eaten by any slush puddles on the way back, and took a quick shower before falling into bed at close to 4am.
I found the SwingGoth contingent, checked my coat (omg crowds), got my
ticket, Carla arrived and got her ticket and we went into the Burton
exhibit (omg crowds). I think we headed off the wrong way around the
exhibit rooms, but that ended up being a bit easier on us as we could just
squeeze in to see thing without having to move in the line. The headless
horseman's cape from Sleepy Hollow was incredibly detailed. Got to see
larger versions of the Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy figures. Saw Jack
Skellington and his heads, and Oogie boogie. Also some large black monster
sculputres. Made it down to the basement to see Burton's polaroid prints
(pretty!). From there, I said goodbye to Carla and made my way back to the
subway to head down to Canal. Picked up my luggage, got a bottle of water,
and got the car packed up. The GPS sent me along the parkways all the way
to CT (very pretty with the snow covered trees) until I got sick of the
shoulder construction and got onto 95. Weather was clear as a bell.
Stopped at Tim Horton's for dinner, tea, and also filled up the car (omg
expensive), and was home at around 9:30. I'm amazed that I wasn't losing
focus on the drive, I think it helped that I loaded up the CD player with
all 5 of my Abney Park cds and sang along the whole way. :) I was very
glad that no one wanted to go skiing with me the next day, I fell into bed
at 11pm and slept for 11 hours.