Okay, the breakdown of my four day trip.
9:00am Left Lafayette. Took longer than I thought, because I got caught in Wal-Mart for an hour buying stuff I needed for trip but didn't have.
10:10am reached west Lake Charles.
12:15pm stopped for lunch 26 miles east of Houston.
1:28pm on the road again. Houston is lost in a long blur of construction and accident traffic. Eastbound I-10 had all three lanes closed due to a pileup that caused something to catch on fire. By the time I passed it going westbound, they were cleaning up the road. Of course everybody in all three landes of westbound I-10 had to look.
4:15pm turned off I-10 per Mapquest's instructions. I know a better way now. Not much shorter timewise, but a tad more direct.
5:20pm finally reached Kai's house. The rest of the night is a daze, a symptom of too-much-driving coma. Though I remember the Tex-Mex restaurant with the 50s decor.
9:05am Awake, dressed, and ready to go out the door. Being pregnant hasn't made Kai any faster on getting ready. She shows me the LBJ Presidential library after breakfast at IHOP, more of Austin, and lunch at Olive Garden.
2:00pm Finally able to leave my sister's. Much later than I wanted to. I took the new route that Kai recommended.
3:55pm Reached I-10.
6:00pm Finally checked into the hotel. NEVER schedule to go through rush hour traffic AGAIN!
8:00pm Cleaned up and prettied up for the $17 reception that ran from 7pm to 9pm. I agreed with another diabetic I met on the 17th, for that much money they could have had sandwiches or something besides eclairs, fruit, cheese, and cake. And the price did not include liquor. But I got to have room service for the first time.
The conference. I got all my goodies signed, and even found a couple of books I never thought I'd be able to read--like "Nancy Drew and the Women Who Created Her." I made some contacts, especially a lead on a writing group in LaPlace made up of people who also have jobs! And Toni Plummer thinks the Zy's novel idea is sellable, so I have something to shut that voice up with. I got fired up and actually got my outlining mostly done, and made headway into the next scene.
Funny observation: there was about 70 people at the conference. 4 of us looked under 30, and that's including Toni Plummer who was an invited guest. I want to publish before I'm retirement age, but there is a precedent if I don't.
11:00am Checked out the hotel and hit the road. Went around Houston and found all the new subdivion areas. But no having to stop for toll plazas! And no rush hour traffic!
1:15pm reached Lake Charles.
2:13pm reached Lafayette and stopped to see Chad. He's doing a lot better, even though he's still stuck on house rest for the next two months.
4:30pm left Lafayette.
6:00pm home finally.
And that's the trip in a nutshell. Next year's conference is in Dallas. And I promised Kai that Chad and I would go back for a longer, week-long trip, which will probably be next year after he's finished with eye surgeries.
I found a group for Pirates in garb! I won't be doing the New Orleans pub crawl with them--that pesky driving flare up again. And I have to finish at least the corset and red doublet by July 8th. Though this is a conversation more for the Garb Closet, but I am really impressed with the fifth picture in the Extreme Costuming gallery. So now I'm toying with the idea of making a version of the Effigy corset nice enough to show if I undo my doublet. May need to rethink the lining on the red doublet too. So you know what I'm going to be doing this weekend.