This past weekend, a group of DMers revived one of our proudest traditions....EUROMEET! This event took place in London, England in the Notting Hill area.
Niamh Sedai, the Head of the Blue Ajah Community at Dragonmount sent us this report:
Euromeet. It has been many a year since Dragonmount has heard that word (on the Comm. Side at least) but this year, a bunch of us managed to get together and set a location and date. I am sure it was with a few nerves and not a little excitement that we made our way to Notting Hill, London for what was to become a fabulous weekend.
Maria, Calyn and I were first to the hotel. Talya and Egwene followed a little later (Maria and I passed them in the street on our way to pick up ShengalTheDragon.). We got back to the hotel, Shengal in tow, to meet Cereline, Calynâ€™s friend. It was quite remarkable how quickly we all seemed to integrate with one another. We had a quick trip to a PrÃªt A Manger (Conveniently placed next to an Ann Summers Knickerbox. I think the theme for our weekend was set then). We booked into a Pizza Hut and headed back to the hotel. There, we met with demonspawn, Danya, her sister Henriette, Loki and Anajon. After a brief fascination with Lokiâ€™s hair (I have never seen such awesome curls) we made our way to Pizza Hut. Linguistics became a theme for the evening as Maria, Danya and Henriette spoke rapid Norwegian all evening whilst Egwene and Anajon chattered on in German. Talya, Loki, demonspawn and I were sat in the middle, not a little confused. The waiter didnâ€™t help much either owing to his lack of fluency in the English language. Danyaâ€™s attempt to order â€œWHITE.WINE!â€ was definitely a highlight of the evening. Shengal, sadly, had to leave us quite early in the evening, but we made our way across the road to a Pub and set about taking it over.
We had a great deal of fun there, just chatting and being a little crazy. It was there after a random discussion about bizarre musicians and a very interesting revelation from demonspawn, that the Michael Jackson Appreciation Society was born (If you at D*Con can have secret societies, then so can we!) We walked (stumbled?) our way back to the hotel. We met up again in the morning (Yes. I admit to being five minutes late.) Egwene and Talya went to Harrods, Calyn and Cereline went sightseeing and the rest of us went out for Breakfast! Then we made our way to Covent Garden, were Loki bought enough fruit to officially become a Greengrocer! We wandered around and had a look at stuff. Maria bought a beautiful stole! Then we decided to walk to Piccadilly Circus. And got lost. We managed to catch the tube there and got there a few minutes late. Then we found the Sci-Fi and Fantasy section. We spent AGES there, looking at books, discussing books, recommending books, browsing books, bitching about books and finally making an offering around a stack of copies of â€œThe Eye of the Worldâ€. Henriette was a little freaked! Then we went to the childrenâ€™s section where Talya, Loki and I, hung out with a Dalek! After a brief trip to Virgin Megastores, we walked to Leicester Square. We went to an Angus Steakhouse to await Chilli and Corki. Telling them we were at the Angus Steakhouse on the corner of Leicester Square was difficult though. Seeing as there are about 300 Angus Steakhouses in the vicinity! After that, we went to an Italian restaurant for something to eat. We had a hilarious time in which Chilli fell off his chair and we got charged for extra garlic bread (I am still suspicious about this and blame it entirely on Corki! )
Some of us made our way back to hotel whilst others went for Ice Cream. We all got sorted and then, we began the walk to the cinema. DiamondMask and Anajon came along for this too. We got to have two rows to ourselves. We all had a fabulous time, though opinions on the film were mixed. The real highlight was afterwards when we walked past a photo booth- Talya and I both decided to see how many people we could fit in. However, after managing to somehow get seven people in, it clunked and we swiftly departed! After that, we tried to find a pub. We searched high and low for one that was not closing or full and eventually found enough space! Talya decided to introduce us all to Archers and Lemonade (Yummy!). But alas, we eventually got kicked out and made our way back to the hotel.
The next morning, we were up bright and breezy. After a swift breakfast, we went on the long, long trek to Harrods! We walked down Ambassadorâ€™s Row and were treated to â€œJa, vi elskerâ€, the Norwegian National Anthem outside the Norwegian Embassy. Henriette and Maria sang heartily but Danya just looked scared! On our walk through Hyde Park we started casting everyone in a WoT role. Danya got Rand and I got Bela a.k.a The Dark One. Our vision of the Last Battle was pretty spectacular! The general theme of the day as well was â€œDragonmount- The Musicalâ€ as we all kept randomly burst
Getting to Harrods was awesome as the first thing we did was head straight for the Ice Cream. The sundaes were amazing! Egwene and I were sat on opposites sides of this huge Ice Cream bar making very happy faces at one another! Then we went for a browse! The food hall got a lot of our attention as did the Egyptian Escalators. We went all the way up and then all the way down to see the Diana Memorial. Then we went to Hamleys. Some weirdo staff member tried to hit on Maria as she inappropriately touched the Sirius Black cardboard cut out, but we had a great time! Talya, Maria, Calyn and I went to the dressing up section and had a great deal of fun experimenting with the hats and Tiaras, though we did lose Henriette and Danya! After that we started our Bus Hopping Trip around London! We saw St Pauls Cathedral, Trafalgar Square! We hopped off at Tower Bridge, though Egwene and I had to keep hold of Loki in order to stop him clambering all over the place and causing me multiple mini-heart attacks! We walked quite a way down the side of the river though Maria and Cereline went off for dinner. We walked through Trafalgar Square singing such hits as â€œWhat shall we do with a drunken sailor?â€ and â€œDonâ€™t cry for me Argentinaâ€. We passed the trailers and stuff for â€œNational Treasure 2â€ on our way to Buckingham Palace. Then we caught the Bus back (after a search for the right stop!) to Notting Hill.
We had a somewhat interesting time selecting food and alcohol and then we went back to the hotel. We took over the lounge and after some messing around the Wheel of Time Quiz began. There were two teams (The Original London Cast! YAY! And The Dark Oneâ€™s Luck. Urgh!). I am happy to report that The Original London Cast won owing to Calyn and Egweneâ€™s extensive book knowledge, my very good knowledge of WoT Geography (I like the maps!) and Lokiâ€™s lucky coin! At 12.30am we were asked to leave the lounge but none of us were tired so we went to demonspawnâ€™s huge, insanely gorgeous room. Maria, Cereline, Danya and Henriette all went to bed. The rest of us were intending to go at some point and never quite made it.We just sat up all night talking, singing, having fun and generally enjoying each otherâ€™s company for as long as we could. 7am came so we went in search of food and could only find a McDonaldâ€™s open. Corki and DiamondMask had stayed all night, pretty much for free so they caught the tube home. We got back to the hotel, and got packed. It was a much more subdued morning as we all knew weâ€™d be leaving soon and the fact that someone (a few people?) had complained about the noise. We all enjoyed our last hour together and leaving was very difficult for everyone. I know I had an amazing time hanging out with a great bunch of people who know what I mean when I talk about â€œAes Sedai Serenityâ€ or â€œThe Flame and Voidâ€. This is a pretty unique experience.
I wish that all of you could have been with us, enjoying this great experience. We were all thinking about you and how much fun you would have had. But 2008 is coming. And I think some of you better start saving.
Niamh Sedai also sent us a few pictures.
You can see more pictures like this here.
They are already planning next summer's gathering on our DM Meets forum.
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