Thursday, October 11, 2007
Getting to Calgary Wednesday, Oct 10
The pilot's name on the flight from Sacramento to SanFrancisco was Mallard. I thought that was a good sign, and certainly we arrived in San Francisco in good time and in one piece. There, I easily found my connection and with time to spare checked out the airport bookstore and FOUND MY BOOK! There were two and they were on a bookshelf toward the back so I gave them a ride to the limelight, stuck a couple of Turpentine bookmarks in them and wished them good flight.
I returned to my gate, and everyone was gone! Two people were lined up at the door and they were the last passengers boarding. Phew. That would have been difficult to miss my flight because I was guerilla re-shelving.
On the flight the man seated directly ahead of me wore a t-shirt that said Casper core drilling. While we were waiting to get off the plane in Calgary I spoke to him. "I see Casper and drilling and I think Wyoming." He looked at me, puzzled. Casper core drilling is in San Diego, not Casper Wyoming. Whoops. I asked if the group of guys, he was with were headed out hunting and then wished them to have a good time, but not luck shooting the geese and ducks they were after. When they asked, I said I was in Calgary for the Word Fest, they were intrigued I was an author, and once again, I took out the bookmarks. I handed them out to the hunters and to the 2 rows beside and behind me. And then I stepped off the plane and into Calgary.
Writer and woodworker David Finch drove me and writers Michelle Noel and Dennis Lee through Calgary, pointing out the two rivers that run through the city, the historic architecture, the recreated fort, and the Calgary Tower that resembles Seattle's. Calgary, I found, also has some of the most beautiful man hole covers I've ever seen.
We checked in to the Hyatt and I felt right at home with the buffalo in the front lobby. Upstairs I was given a per diem and asked to count the money. When I pointed out there was no money in there but some very pretty paper, the man laughed and said it was worth more than US cash. Very true. Conference Bag in hand along with money more valuable than US currency, I went to my room, changed clothes and rushed out to the reception at the tower. I met Tony Rees, Aritha van Herk and Gil Adamson, who were going to appear on the panel with me the next day. There followed a reading and there I met Michelle Noel again. After the reading Michelle and I went to dinner. He, an expert chef as well as writer, promised to send me his recipe for Beaver.