Friday, August 26, 2011

Coming Home Tour - Reflections

The Bad

  • The car I rented didn’t have cruise control and it teased me with promises of Sirius XM Radio only to find out there was no subscription. That’s five hours of my foot on the gas and praying the radio had something good on and my mp3 player didn’t decide to die despite me charging it the night before.
  • Payment issues forcing me to pay everything in advance unexpectedly.Luckily, I saved for this trip, but the inconvenience was there anyway.
  • The Westin nickel and diming everything.
  • The Westin turning into a club on a Saturday night. Would’ve been nice to have a head’s up that was going to happen.
  • The pillows at the Westin. There really is such a thing as too damn soft.
  • The A/C at the Westin was bipolar—didn’t know if it wanted to work consistently or at all.
  • The cabbie taking us on an unwanted tour of Atlanta to go basically three miles down Piedmont to Smith's Olde Bar. I got us to around there in five minutes driving blind the next day.
  • Not being able to connect with my cousins. L Damn vibrate mode!
  • The Waffle House in Downtown Atlanta full of rude-ass college students blocking precious parking. Rude. Like, I had no words for the rudeness, so thus explaining why there is no Waffle House photo or reflection coming (I was so flabbergasted I forgot to snap a photo…and I had to drive all the way back to SC less the waffle I had anticipated all damn weekend. My consolation is this wasn’t the Waffle House I’d envisioned in Reconstructing Jada Channing anyway).

The Good
  • Getting to and from Atlanta safely in my non-cruise-control-having car, praise be to God.
  • Someone actually coming to the Meet and Greet! *shout out Courtnie & her peeps and please learn Javier’s real name!*
  • The Sun Dial Restaurant being delicious (if slightly overpriced) with gorgeous views. Gorgeous. Though, as it turns out, there is no dance floor per se, I figured out what Jada Mae will be craving when she’s pregnant. There may be shorts.
(Jada's sweet tea...with vanilla and orange - yum) and cheesecake. There was also a shrimp fondue-type thing in which you dip toasted bread and just yum, yum, yum!)
  • The cutie bouncer at the pub next door to the Westin. He wore the mess out of a black Security T-shirt.
  • Learning I like Baileys Irish Cream. A lot. I’m sure both Aaron and Patrick are proud of this.
  • The photo shoot. Had “I Feel Pretty” playing in my head. Sevan Photography, shout out—can’t wait to see the results and Shannon is good people. Thanks Nuri for hipping me to them! If you need photos done, go to them, seriously.
  • Smith’s Olde Bar had some tater tots that brought me to a happy place, yes. Also, after fighting off some sleepiness, enjoyed the first band that performed that night (bonus Trent from The Way That You Play It). Favorite parts of the band: the hottie Black T-shirt!Rhythm Guitarist and the Percussionist—both of whom couldn’t even give the slightest of damns. It was hot.
  • Traveling to the spots featured in our novels. My favorite has got to be the “underwhelming” Island Def Jam Music Group location, but apparently it’s a recording studio so…welp? I literally thought the GPS had led us to someplace we should’ve never gone but nope, there it was! That was a cool surprise. Piedmont Park is large and it was ridiculously hot. My favorite, though, was probably the Plaza Theater. There may be shorts.

The Epic

  • Finally meeting BJ (it beared repeating.)!
  • Breaking out of my shell slightly (This is includes wearing one of BJ's dresses a dress I’d bought over a year ago but not having worn until this trip…1.) I’m not a dress person and 2.) this is a dress that’s grown and, dare I say, sexy, and I’m still working on being both; although I apparently failed a test because a guy was waving at me (I was not wearing the grown-and-sexy dress; I was wearing my birthday dress…incidentally a dress that I’d also purchased last year and hadn’t worn out until my birthday, heh) and I did not notice it at all. Almost 12 hours later BJ deigns to tell me some guy was trying to let me know his interest. Well, hell, I can’t be blamed for this because BJ was looking fierce so I naturally assumed any attention would go to her. Lesson learned.).

(le white dress. Apparently, it was a hit...)
  • Ironically realizing it’s much harder to do marathon conversations in person.
  • A very tacky flashing Cinderella pumpkin-esque horse-drawn carriage. There may be shorts.
  • Realizing someone you’ve been fangirling for years is actually someone who calls you a friend and being extremely humbled by that.
  • BJ realizing I really am a sports girl. Hee.
  • BJ accusing me of holding out on her re: my sense of humor. I call shenanigans on that, although my NASCAR analogy was pretty awesome. Don’t ask me what I was comparing, however; I’d just had alcohol and I was sleepy.
  • Having two camera-averse people tasked with taking pictures for their respective blogs…BJ did a better job than I did, admittedly. I was even a good sport and didn’t run away from the camera (that wasn’t the photo-shoot!camera. Y’all be proud).
  • Friendships being affirmed.
All in all, I consider the weekend a success; as first-times go for something like this, there were hiccups and disappointments, but I think if this is done again, it’ll be far more laidback and chill. I realized I’m personally not a huge Atlanta-as-a-city fan, although I do like it as a choice as a hub for my characters’ in the universe that’s being created with them. I do hope to do more trips like this with BJ and other author friends; and hopefully with more readers too.


Anonymous said...

Nickeled and dimed? The Westin ten-ed and twenty-ed.

Still weirded out over that nighclub scene. That ish was ridic.

Lol @ bipolar AC. So true!

RUDE! I don't even like breakfast, and I had set my mouth for a pecan waffle.

If you get an update on Javier, please pass it on. I'm all invested in that romance.

Why did you have to bring up that hot bouncer? I had forgot all about that dude, and now I can see his ass walking past me, and walking back, taunting me, begging for attention.

Patrick, that hottie Irishman? Is that story out somewhere? I loved that one.

I'm also loving Sevan. Hope I can get in a shoot with them next year, when I'm back in the states.

Black T-shirt for the win. He was packing.

I'm still giggling over that weak ass Def Jam building. I hope we just wandered up on their supply/secretary pool building, and they really do business somewhere else.

So, I definitely learned my lesson about thinking Savannah realizes who is paying attention to her enough to decide that she is blowing off said attention. I totally thought you had hit your "Don't bother me" button. Next time, I will be saying, "Psst. Dude in the gray polo, eight o'clock."

Our favorite Cinderella coach, in a short? Yes please! This could easily be a pregnant Jada wants her tea now and refuses to walk back to the hotel, No thank you, Aaron. Get me a taxi, or else get me a pumpkin coach, stat!

If I were a guy, your enthusiasm for sports would be a top reason to get at that. Just sayin' (the same thing I always say about your cute behind posting up at a sports bar, erhmm).

I wish we had written down that NASCAR analogy, lol.

Bana said...

Like...why would you park your behemoth RIGHT IN FRONT OF AN OPEN SPACE? Jesus - don't parents still teach manners?

I'm all invested in the Javier saga myself. That story is hilarious and would be perfect chick lit if that were still popular.

Patrick is the hottie Irishman and hopefully that story will pop up somewhere soon - it's going through submissions, actually. :)

Black T-shirt WAS packing. Mama was pleased...

I do think the building was their recording studios. That's my story and I'm sticking with it, anyway.

Yeah, I had no idea. I assume nobody's paying attention to me unless they're blatant about it. I still feel bad, actually! bless my heart.

Aaron would get the pumpkin coach just to be an ass! LOL oh, those two. I know Amazon doesn't like y'all, but I do! *snuggles*

As soon as football season really starts, I'll go at least watch the first quarter or something at the bar, just for you. :p

Totally should've written that NASCAR analogy down. Welp! lol

nuri said...

SO GLAD THIS EVENT WAS A GREAT TIME; I KNEW IT WOULD BE! i'm so proud of you both and i'm loving reading all these details. also love the videos and i cannot wait to see how your photos came out, sav.

and as always, thanks for all the shoutouts/crediting :)