Thursday, October 24, 2013

ALA Recap

Oh my goodness my friends. I had the craziest two days I think that I have ever had. I was really nervous when it was the night before and I all I did was ask myself "What was I thinking!?" Two days? Not even two full days? At a Book Conference? In a city I had never been to before?

Needless to say, it was two of the best days I've ever had. We had a 6AM flight out of New York, and we landed shortly before 8AM in Chicago where I don't think I can even explain my excitement at being there. I love traveling be it road trips or really anything. I don't get to do it often, and more so now, having a big kid job, it makes traveling hard.

Everyone said that I was crazy for doing this. For dragging my poor, wonderful boyfriend to Chicago for a book convention. I didn't think we would get to do much sight seeing, and I'm sure we missed a ton of really cool things, but I got to see everything that I wanted to, eat what I wanted to, and even grab all the cool books that I wanted!

So excited I couldn't even talk.
So where was? 8AM we made it to Chicago, and we didn't make it to the convention center until like 8:30. I didn't realize that my hotel was attached to the convention center so I made the poor man drive to the center even though it was right there. I guess it was only fair as we drove in a circle (3 Times to the same Hotel) when I was jittery and wanted to get to ALA. I just wanted to be there already!

Right away we hooked up with Bailey and her mom Jamie, and they gave me the lowdown on what ALA was like as this was my first time there. They told me about how they have a post office in the hall, on the floor! (BEA Listen up!) I mostly wandered while Mike went to hold my spot in line for Sarah Dessen because I missed her at BEA, no way that was happening again...
The Bean!

Right away I got a ton of books, and when I went to meet Mike on line, he was shocked as I had to organize everything. (I also won't lie, I ditched the books with him so that I could free up my shoulders and walk around a little bit.) We wound up leaving a little early to check into the hotel which was actually a really awesome place. There was a fitness center and pool (Which I knew when I booked it, but by the time that it came time to go 6 months later, I left my bathing suit at home.) 

I think my favorite part of this trip was that I was able to not just do the conference, but also see some of Chicago. I didn't feel tied down to the Convention Center because I didn't have to be at a signing at least once an hour. I was able to get out and sight see and we got to see so many sights! We went to see the Bean, and we got to walk around Chicago. I never realized how artsy this city was.

I was terrified and I loved it.
Of course we went and tried some Deep Dish Pizza which was delicious and I was only able to eat while slice while Mike had 3. We had to walk the pizza off, and we decided to do that while visiting the Skytower. It was a really amazing experience, and I would love to repeat it! I think the biggest problem is that it was completely packed and you couldn't get a chance to do something fun because everyone wanted to push their way into the 4 little boxes that hovered over the city. It was terrifying sitting on that because while I understood I was in a safe little box, it did not feel like I was in a safe little box.

We spent most of the next day in the hall as well, wandering around, sadly, Bailey and her mom had to leave somewhat early, because they were flying out Sunday the same way we were. The remainder of our last day was spent wandering before we caught or flight back home. Which was a pain, but thats a story for another time. I cannot wait to go back and explore another new city!

All the great books!

PS. Sorry this took so long to get up, but better late than never, yeah?

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