Xray the Enforcer

WorldCon Helsinki 2017 - Attendance list p1!

377 posts in this topic

This is a general announcement to the effect that, marginally miraculously, I am here. I hope there are plans for dinner or something!

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Hey everyone, we're thinking of organizing a BwB dinner on Friday (no other nights are good) before the Hugos. We're still working out the details but keep the option open while we work it out!

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I would love to head downtown and check out a few places while it's not too busy, and Thursday might be the best day to do this. If anyone's interested then let me know somehow. As I don't use Facebook, PM if you don't have my email address or phone number!

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I've now been to the family wedding that prevented me from making the start of WorldCon. Now at Aberdeen airport to start the journey to Helsinki, I've been enjoying the Facebook posts of the people who are already there, looking forward to joining you.

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Posted (edited)

Group Dinner

We have made reservations for Saturday at 7pm for 30 people at this Viking-themed restaurant downtown:

http://m.ravintolaharald.fi/ (Helsinki)

The do have vegetarian options. Main courses start around 20 euros, but there are several set menus too. All of us or sub groups of us can do the Chief's Feast meal too (12 people or more). If you are interested in going, post here or in FB.

 

Please get there just before 7pm.  

Edited by LugaJetboyGirl-irra

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Posted (edited)

Dinner List so far: LJBG, Pod, Mormont, Ran, Linda, Cuellar, Mrs. Cuellar, Wolfgang, Toft, williamjm, Lady Narcissa, +27 from FB thread.

We can add to our reservation so anyone else who wants to go, just chime in.

Edited by LugaJetboyGirl-irra
more names

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My wife and I will do dinner sat!

We are planning to do a tour to the castle in the morning if anyone is interested. Probably best day weather wise, so figured we do that while we can.

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5 minutes ago, LugaJetboyGirl-irra said:

Dinner List so far: LJBG, Pod, Mormont, Ran, Linda

Count me in. :)

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1 hour ago, Cuellar said:

We are planning to do a tour to the castle in the morning if anyone is interested. Probably best day weather wise, so figured we do that while we can.

The fortress/island? If so I would be interested.

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2 hours ago, LugaJetboyGirl-irra said:

Dinner List so far: LJBG, Pod, Mormont, Ran, Linda, Cuellar, Mrs. Cuellar, Wolfgang, Toft, +20 from FB thread.

We can add to our reservation so anyone else who wants to go, just chime in.

I'd like to go as well, it sounds good.

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For fortress tour - Meeting at 10 in front of central station, will take tram from there.  There s an English language tour starting at 11 we will try to join.

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Minor trip update -

Rode the train in, seemless customs/immigration, smooth check in and hopped on the train to pasila. 10 min door to door.

Bumped into pod within 30 seconds of registering. Went to a panel on space, 50000000 people in line, was like a George panel. Went to ran and lindas panel, which was interesting as a member of the community. Would have been good if we could have asked some tough questions.  Met up with some bwb. Went to trivia which was fun, ended up grouping with some random super fun team and had an epic fail on trivia. I literally couldn't remember stuff I read last week. Then headed to eat/drink... 

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I expected much posting here, but I guess everything's on Facebook these days!

We have been blessed so far with fantastic weather, low 20s during the day and 13 or 14 overnight. But humid. I keep planning to put on my shorts but once we leave our airbnb in the morning we don't get back until night, so jeans all day. We are probably staying the most south of anyone, but it's still only a 20 minute tram ride, plus about a 7 or 8 minute walk to the tram, which drops us off at the conference center.

We arrived Monday afternoon, got settled in, bought groceries and found a local pub to have dinner. Great cocktails, which we hope to replicate on our return home! 

On Tuesday we walked forever, met up with Buckwheat and saw the market at the ferry terminal, the Orthodox cathedral which is also down by the harbor, the magnificent Lutheran cathedral, the Chapel of Silence, a pod shaped wooden structure for peace and contemplation in the middle of a busy city square, and the cool Rock Church, carved into solid granite. Then we headed to Messukeskus for registration, an easy in and out especially since there was a very aggressive organizer ordering everyone to get the hell out immediately! Then headed back home and passed out from exhaustion. 

Oh...and on the way from the market we stopped at a Magnum pop-up shop and made our own Magnum bars! The shop had the frozen ice cream ready for dipping into white, milk or dark chocolate and a dozen different toppings to add. Decadent doesn't begin to describe the results!

Wednesday morning we were back at the harbour to take the ferry to the five islands that make up the island fortress of Suomenlinna, with 100 of our fellow con goers. You could easily spend the better part of the day there, not just an hour and a half. Then back to Messukeskus for the start of the con.

Things did not start well in that nobody knew where they were going or where the different stair wells were, the hallways where the conference rooms are somewhat narrow and most of the rooms are fairly small. 100 people. The stairs and the halls were so jammed you couldn't move and before you got to the room you wanted you were being told they were full. We all attended the opening ceremonies (every opening ceremonies is boring :P ) just because GRRM was doing a podcast with Tea and Jeopardy in the same room.

I had never heard of the podcast, or, at least, forgot  they've been nominated for a Hugo several times, and it seems clever and funny and worth listening to once I get home. Emma and Peter Newman play an upper crust lady and her butler and have guests for tea and cake. George was asked what the RR stands for, and he replied 'my middle initials?', and few other amusing things, and some more serious questions fame and lack of privacy. Emma decided he was George Really Really Martin. George 'drinks' a sleeping potion that gives horrible nightmares and the crowd was urged to wake him by making happy noises. That didn't work, but making the sounds your favourite character made when they were killed did the trick!

After all the complaints about the overcrowded conditions the Con organizers shut down new registrations, which must have disappointed people who planned to come in on day passes or register for the weekend, but there wasn't much else they could to. I understand about 6,000 took full memberships and another 2,000 supporting memberships were sold, which is several thousand more than KC last year.

The day ended with Chinese food with a dozen board members, and a cocktail at our local bar. :)  We tried the parties but the space was relatively small, a large hall for several hundred in the hotel, but it was crowded and the booze expensive so we left. Mormont apparently found a much better party walking back to his hotel, the lucky devil!

Thursday was much more organized, partly because people knew where they were going and partly because more volunteers were in the halls controlling traffic and lines, and also because they clued in to the fact they have to use the standard Con rule, order everyone out of the session room at the end so that people who were lined up waiting could get in to the next session.

The signing session with George must have been a nightmare.

A small group of us dined at a Nepalese buffet and then went back for a Quiz, run by Lada from Dublin. The quiz was gruesomely difficult. Name the five towers of Harrenhall. Who lost the Lannister sword. What were the names of Dunk's three horses. Who was the Kingmaker. A team of strangers who obviously had better memories than we did won the quiz. In fact, I think all the top 3 teams were strangers! Bah! We shall study up for Dublin!

We again tried the parties, China and Dublin this time, and it was just as bad as the night before, so 8 of us took off for a Steam Punk bar near the central train station. When we got there we were asked for a 3 euro cover charge, so we said screw it and went to the brew pub across the way, making Targh very happy since it was on his list of brew pubs to visit. Shortly thereafter another half dozen BwBers and two newbies joined us and a good time was had by all. After imbibing a beer and a half I left with Targh's backpack (wondering why the hell my backpack felt so heavy, duh, half a dozen bottles of beer were in it) and we had to come back with the taxi to exchange packs. Still left my hoody behind, though. You can dress me up but you really can't let me have a beer and a half! :P 

More tonight or tomorrow. We leave Sunday morning, sadly, someone will have to report on the close!

Edited by Fragile Bird

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Please forgive my absence from the dinner - I've just arrived at the con and am not feeling especially energetic so rather than rush downtown (having thought it was 7.30pm not 7pm...) in the rain and thunder, I'll relax here for a bit and maybe join later. Please post here if you move on. Otherwise, I'll be at the Irish party.

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I managed to get drenched...

I decided to drop my bag off at my apartment before going to dinner.

I underestimated traffic and got delayed because of that. Because I was in a hurry I got on the wrong bus after leaving the apartment.

As I got off said bus it started raining...

Even my underwear got wet. I tried to hide in a bakery but it was too late.

(My thanks to whoever invented waterproof smartphones.)

Now, after a hot shower, I'm making good use of the heated drying rack in the bathroom of my apartment.

Hummus, bread and bananas shall be my not so viking meal I fear.

 

Edited by Wolfgang I

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The storm was sudden and impressive: an intense looming darkness preceded an abrupt downpour with outbreaks of thunder. Luckily, I was able to rush indoors. There is a public safety warning in place so perhaps it is not over yet.

I'm at the Irish party but it's a bit dull so I might head to the city centre. Is everyone still there?

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On 8/4/2017 at 11:30 AM, Cuellar said:

(Repost from facebook) Normally I let Lee do all the food organizing, but I decided to set up dinner (at a gastropub, so reasonably priced) for Sunday August 13th (shooting for 7 PM).  Location is Bryggeri Helsinki a Finnish gastropub, afew blocks from the central station: 

http://bryggeri.fi/en/

Was shooting for 10 people, have 10, but can up the reservation if anyone else wants in. 

Reminder, dinner tomorrow if you are around.   Happy to add people last minute, but may need to divide to 2 tables.

Place is near the main esplanade or what not in city center (or magnum store if you've be there), at 7 pm.

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