Chicago, 1997

The relative order of things is a bit fuzzy, this is all from memory.

Aug 1

Siobhan and I ended up driving to Chicago on our own, despite plans by others to come with us. Matt, Siobhan and I stayed at the other Day's Inn, not the official one for both Pfest and Convergence I. We found Matt in the lobby as we arrived after a harrowing drive through Chicago. We'd decided to try and avoid the toll route and found out that it was there as a faster way into the city. Then our map of downtown Chicago was proved to be utterly wrong and we only managed to find the lake shore and follow it up to the hotel by sheer luck. The hotel lobby stank, Sio got stuck in a smoking room, and we were ripped off by a cab driver when we took the taxi to the Vic for the night. We were distracted since we were sharing a cab with two random goths that we'd met in the elevator on our way out and talking about the scene in Texas or some other place in the south.

I saw $t. &reux again in the line up and we managed to catch a few minutes to talk on the stairs. He introduced me to QPM/Thistle in the lobby. I spotted Jihad/Troy in the main room and caught him to talk with for a while. The bands that played that night were The Moon Seven Times, Ben Neill, Love Spirals Downwards, Vidna Obmana and Steve Roach. Xthlc was writing a review of the festival for Haven and took notes through most of it. We had settled ourselves in the balcony to kick back and listen to the bands, but they were relatively sedate and ethereal so it was occasionally hard not to drift off, so I would wander around and talk to people every so often. I recall seeing one woman who'd had her long hair braided and dreaded and had shiny bits of stuff and toys tangled in it.

We went back to the official Day's Inn on Diversy to hang out. I sat in Troy's room for a while with him, catching up, and Matt and Siobhan wandered up eventually to drag us back down to the lobby. William Faith wandered by and gathered up people to go to a diner near by, since Monica was exhausted. I stayed to talk a while with Gabriel/V.Endure and took a taxi back by myself to our hotel.

Aug 2

We met Eileen at the Field Musuem for the dinosaur exhibit after our first nerve wracking experience with the El, the Chicago elevated train system. It was wooden, rickety, and you could see down between the boards to the ground when you forgot and watched where your feet were going. Wildfire was there also and I'm sure I was introduced to other people but I can't recall right now. We also went shopping at one point and I picked up a pair of stiletto heel skull buckle boots on sale.

Gabriel moved into our hotel and shared a room with Siobhan for the last night since Troy had decided to go back to Austin a day early. Siobhan's car, actually BC's, decided to break down as we were driving him to the airport and he had to grab a cab to get there on time. She had it towed to a garage by CAA and we continued on to the hotel by cab.

Gabriel, Siobhan, Xthlc and I went up on the roof of the hotel to watch a thunderstorm walk across Chicago on lightening feet before heading back to the Vic. We saw Faith and the Muse, Robert Rich, I loved the sound scapes that Robert Rich produced, and sat there enthralled as Matt dozed beside me. I seem to recall meeting Otterly from SF in the lobby, since a group of Toronto people, including Klaus and Midnight, showed up and started introducing us around.

Aug 3

Matt and Gabriel had left to head home, so Siobhan and I packed up all our stuff and began the trek across Chicago to regain the car and drive it home. A lot of people tried to be helpful when we asked directions on the El, but we ended up getting off one stop away from where we should have, and walking with our bags to the garage. It was hot, they weren't finished yet, we sat and sweated and drank drinks from the dispenser in their waiting area. They wrapped it up and we got on the road finally, Siobhan the poorer for the price of a new alternator.

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