Today is/was "hotel day" for the San Diego Comic-Con. This is, traditionally, a cluster of epic proportions. thousands of fanboys all trying to grab hotels within the same 5 minute span. Server crashes have become a regular occurrence.
Well, they changed the process this year, and while, on the technology side, things went much smoother, I cannot say my stress levels are any lower. This is mainly because I tend to have a problem with feeling like I'm not in control of a situation.
I should give a few details. I have a hotel reservation in San Diego for that weekend already, but it was quite expensive. The idea was to have something in place, ready to go, that would be significantly closer to the convention center than we have been. Our traditional hotel, the Doubletree Downtown, is a nice place, but about a mile from the convention center, and the Gaslamp district, which is the "nightlife" area.
I actually love the Doubletree, aside from a REALLY annoying room key problem in '08. The views are amazing, and it's clean. I don't even mind the mile walk to the convention. It was nice in the mornings, stop for coffee, feel the sun and stretch your legs before getting into the sardine can that is the convention center on SDCC weekend.
However, at the end of the day, having to walk, or take the shuttle (which ended up taking longer in most cases), back to the hotel, drop off our bags of convention swag, and then turn around and head back to the Gaslamp for dinner and drinks...well, I have to admit the back and forth got to me. Wore me out too. You're walking miles and miles in the convention to begin with. The idea of having a hotel a block or two away became really appealing.
ANYWAY, if we can get a decent place with the convention discount (which my initial reservation certainly did not include), it would save our group a significant amount. This is especially true in the fact our numbers have dwindled a bit.
Long story short (TOO LATE!), the new system is as such;
You send an e-mail to the hotel booking company, listing your top 12 hotels, in order of preference, and then wait "3-5 hours" for a response. Then you have 5 days to put down your deposit, with the rest due later on.
This is a great system on a lot of levels. In '06 and '08, I took it upon myself to book the room, and sit on the website trying to make things work. Drove me batty. However, I might prefer that to sitting here for hours not knowing where we're staying, or what the situation is.
I guess I'm a control freak.
I'm trying to put it out of my mind.
In that vein, I am trying to focus on this evening's festivities. CByrd and I are attending the Experience Hendrix concert at the Chicago Theatre. I'm fairly excited, as there are a lot of guitar players involved that I am very much in awe of, including Joe Satriani, Eric Johnson, Doyle Bramhall II and Susan Tedeschi. As well artists that really intrigue me like Sacred Steel featuring Robert Randolph.
Now, the fact is, I'm not a HUGE Hendrix fan. I respect him, certainly, I understand his importance, but I can't say that I'm one to bring up Axis Bold As Love and listen to it all the way through. In fact, the only Hendrix I own is a greatest hits package from a few years back. I guess it's all just a bit to "psychedelic" for me. I much prefer the "meat and potatoes" blues-based playing of, say Pete Townsend, Eric Clapton, or even Jimmy Page.
Still it's a chance to see world-class guitarists essay some of the greatest guitar songs of all time. I'm fairly excited.
And, CByrd, I'm 100% sure there will be singing, too...It won't all be instrumental.