With half a night’s sleep under our belts we managed to get up at our usual time on Friday, and even a couple of errands on our way in to the convention. I did my usual Lounging and then actually made it to a panel that wasn’t full! It was a boisterous chat about the DC television and film properties.
By afternoon I was flagging though, so I headed back to take a nap and then got changed for the Hugos. I was running a little late on the way back which meant going in a side entrance to the auditorium and getting lost trying to find John and the gang, but eventually I made it and enjoyed an almost shockingly smooth and professional ceremony. The format was a bit different than usual; there were couches onstage and Karen Lord, the Toastmistress, conducted short little interviews with nominees and presenters at various intervals. It was an interesting variation that worked well, I think. The winners list was overall excellent and there were several good, funny, and moving speeches. All in all it was a jolly good time.
After the ceremony we were lucky enough to have gotten invites to the fabled Hugo Losers Party, a first for me. The venue was Steam Helsinki, a beautiful steampunk bar in the city centre. As we poured in there was a lot of oohing and aaahing at the décor and admiring of some of the bettwe outfits, and then immediate queuing for the open bar. It was a bit chaotic initially but the socializing during the wait was half the fun, I got to chat with one of the charming finalists and we shared our utter horror at one of the line cutters, always good for bonding. In their defense the staff was rushed off their feet the whole night and remained cheerful throughout.
As is my habit I spent my time flitting between places and conversations, while John mainly spent his happily ensconced in one spot. Bryan, Mette, and Warren were outside, along with Alissa and usually Kevin and Andy, while folks like Anna and Ian Stockdale were mainly inside. In true TAFF spirit the Purcells seemed to be everywhere at once.
The losers got cheers as they came in and the winners were booed and made to wear funny hats. There was a steady stream of delicious hors d’oeuvres, and after quite a few gins there was even a little bit of dancing. I fangirled briefly at Ursula Vernon and at Daveed Diggs, and generally enjoyed and excellent party till around 4am.
John and I could not resist the call of the burger truck once again, the weekend crowd outside the station was busier but also more entertaining than previous nights, there was even someone playing Spanish guitar. We slept the sleep of the righteous and well fed that night.