Manchester 8-9th March 08
The Journey Down:
The morning was spent rushing around and packing all those last minute things you always seem to forget the night before. As a result I missed the bus that would take me direct into Glasgow’s Buchannan Bus Station where I was to get the 11am bus that would be taking me to Manchester. After much flailing I managed to get another bus into town, caught the train into Glasgow instead and then had to walk miles from the train station to the bus station. Thankfully I made it with half an hour to spare. Not so thankful was the fact it was pissing of rain the whole journey and I was soaked by the time I reached the bus station. My socks did not dry out till roughly around 11pm that evening. Not a great start for sure!
Got on the bus okay and we started off towards Manchester. I kept myself occupied by reading half of Twilight Streets (which omg is so good, but more on that in a later post!) and writing Ianto Jones/Idris Hopper slash (which, shall be posted at some point today I’m sure ;D). I was also kept amused by the two girls who kept talking about how the bus’ rocking was making them nauseous. The wind and the rain was pretty wild, but I pride myself on having a strong enough stomach and was rather lulled by the rocking myself. I also don’t get into any real panics, I mean a bit of flailing aside, I always tend to see the brighter side to every sire situation. So when the girls promptly started talking about the bus toppling over in the high winds I was left in a state of hysterics and could not stop giggling- much to their amusement. Ah, bless.
We made it into Manchester around 4pm, only to realise that the bus driver had no clue where the actual station was. Much eye rolling ensured from me whilst the group of footie fans sat up the back proceeded to simultaneously mock and cheer the driver. Thankfully after a few wrong turns and some helpful directing from some of the passengers we made it into the station in one piece. I suppose it should have occurred to me then to wonder if I was supposed to have made it to Manchester at all. Alas that some bus drama would be the least of my worries that day as ignorant to the drama that lay ahead of me I set off from the station towards the G-Mex where I’d be meeting Keira ( erin_giles
) and two of her friends.
The Mini Meet-up:
Whilst in the G-Mex, I also met and got very squeeful over a few other LJ-ers whom I hadn’t seen for a while. Off the top of my head, I got smished by Kat ( skittykat
) who was dressed up as Jack Harkness and pulled the look off so well she almost got molested ;D, Emma ( atraphoenix
), Kate ( sasha_lilyrat
), Tessa ( tiggerbrasilf
), Denise ( conjunkie
) and a few others I either didn’t catch names off of or cannot remember (sorry guys!).
From there we arraigned to meet up for dinner and drinks at a Chinese buffet place. But firstly, a trip to the hostel Keira and I were supposed to be staying in! …at which point the drama over getting there arose. Seriously, for being a main city, it was damn hard trying to find a taxi! Usually, in Glasgow for example, you can pretty much do a Ianto and flag one down. In Manchester? You could hardly spot one! So we wandered into a travel lodge to ask whether they had a number we could call. I think the lady assumed we were staying in the travel lodge so she volunteered to call one for us.
The Hostel Drama:
About fifteen minutes later the four of us were in the taxi and on our way to the ‘Montgomery House’ hostel. It was a little further out of town than I’d expected but not by too much. However, when we arrived, a guy came out and stopped out taxi from leaving before proceeding to ask us whether we were checking in.
Guy: I’m afraid I can’t let you do that.
Me: O_O… why?
Guy: We’ve lost the caretaker and the electricity is down.
Me: Oh right. So how long will that take to fix?
(I was clearly expecting the guy to say a couple of hours or something. Which would have been no biggie, we could have managed hauling our luggage about till everything was fixed)
Guy: A couple of weeks.
Me & Others: WHAT!?
The guy went on to tell us how to go about getting our booking fee refunded, but really, that was the least of our worries at the time as we realised we had no where to stay anymore. We piled back into the taxi where our driver took great delight in telling us that due to the fact it was a match day we’d be lucky to find anywhere else to stay. Thanks, mate.
We got dropped off outside the Chinese buffet place and met up with everyone who was meeting up for dinner. We told them about our drama (really, I don’t think I should have gone at all!) and how we’d likely have to camp outside G-Mex or someplace equally as unsavoury. Thankfully the awesomeness that is Tessa and Emma came to our rescue with each of them offering to take two our of the four of us back to stay with them.
Keira and I ended up going with Emma (and Denise who was already staying with her), and heading into Liverpool where she lived. Thank you soso much, Emma, for having us! Honestly, I know both you and your mother said you wouldn’t have seen us stuck, but it was a really wonderful thing of you to do and I’m forever in your debt! ::big smishy smishes::
After dinner we ended up in this sci-fi bar that had this kick-ass life-size Dalek on display (Emma, we never did go hug it! Alas!) and met up with Kat and the people from the Harry Potter Society who came wither her. I’ll spare you all further details of the Saturday (namely because I started wilting a bit after all the travelling and the drama) but it things definitely started looking up and I was feeling pretty satisfied with the way things were turning out.
Woke up for around 8am and was out the house for around 9am. We got the train and a connecting bus service straight towards G-Mex and this is where all THE SQUEE proceeded to ensure!
We got into the venue, picked up our talk tickets and headed straight towards the signing tables where we met up with Julie ( joulez217
) and Bexy ( _stolendreams_
) who’d arrived earlier that morning. I’d been texting them earlier that morning and telling them how I’d ended up staying in Liverpool. Their first question was ‘how much did you have to drink?!’. I’m not sure how I feel about that assumption guys! XD The two of them were absolutely hyper after being up at some ungodly hour that morning in order to get their train. We got them fixed up with some food and drink to keep the adrenaline going and took the rest of the day by storm!
Throughout the day we met up with a whole bunch of other Torchwood fans (almost all of whom had brought a Torchwood Bear with them!) and it was just so amazing! Especially when we all started going up to get our autographs from the Torchwood cast members that were at G-Mex. Namely, of course, Kai Owen who plays Rhys.</div> </div>
Meeting Kai Owen:
A greater more ‘up-for-it’ guy you could not hope to meet! He was absolutely amazing and loved the idea that we all had these teddy bears for the characters and was more than happy to pose with them :D
the obligatory stalker shot
Kai Owen with Julie (and a kinky Ianto Bear!)
Kai Owen with Emma (and her Doctor Bear!)
...of course once he realised we were lacking a Rhys-Bear he got a bit miffed but we were swift to reassure him that we would have a Rhys Bear by the end of the day! (Keira coming to the rescue because she wanted to get her own Torchwood Bear, and what better way to start than with Rhys!?)
After a while of swamping his table, we moved over to the side of the hall and got all the Torchwood Bears lined up together so that they could have their pictures taken. Seeing what was happening, Kai just couldn’t resist running over from his table to pose beside them all! OMG THIS GUY IS PURE AMAZING!!! Haha. He was just, yeah, such a fantastic man! And we again promised him a Rhys Bear by the end of the day!
Ianto, Yan & Myfanwy, Jack, Kinky!Ianto, Tosh & Mam Myfanwy & Terry, Owen, Jack, Doctor, Ianto.
Repeat lineup with added Kai Owen!!
Later on that day, Keira and everyone who’d decided to head over towards the Bear Factor returned with a rather snazzy looking Rhys Bear (dressed in trainers, jeans and a red t-shirt which was expertly customized into a Wales rugby shirt thanks to a rather handy felt pen!) and of course we couldn’t resist heading back over to Kai’s table to show him the bear. The look on his face was priceless
! I do believe he honestly never expected us to follow through with our promise to get one. He was absolutely ecstatic about it promised he’d be telling everyone back on set about it! Of course more posing and squeeing was had yeah, meeting Kai definitely turned into the highlight of Collectormania!
I only wish we'd thought to record the moment we showed him the bear. It was such an ace moment!
Kai Owen’s Talk:
At around half twelve we started queuing up for Kai’s talk. The whole lot of us with Torchwood Bears managed to get the front row seats, using the ‘reserved’ row of seats in front of us to sit our bears on. Kai, bless him, told us how nervous he was doing this sort of thing. Thankfully we never ran out of questions for the guy and kept him talking for the full time he was up.
</div> The Signings:
I also got autographs from:
- Anthony Lewis, aka “Tommy Brokless” from To The Last Man (who looks mighty fine I don’t mind admitting!), and he willingly posed with Tosh bear and even gave her a little snog! Hehe.
- Siobhan Hewlett, aka “Harriett Derbyshire” from To The Last man (who was never actually announced on the website, but was welcomed all the same!). She was really nice actually though I never had anything to really say to her.
for better pictures check out galacticconman's photos [here]
- Anthony Head, aka "Giles" from Buffy. I spent about five to ten minutes taking about random shizzle with him as he signed the autographs I’d asked for. Lovely man, but I knew that already! Heh. Beside his table, the Lewis brothers had been convinced to get their pictures taken together) and we spoke about how they don’t really look like brothers. The aid sitting beside Anthony mentioned how the older brother was rather attractive, to which Anthony leant back to watch as Anthony walked past and actually agreed that yes he sort of was. Cue me and my grinning like a loon! Haha. Anthony also said he liked my name, which made me go all gushy. I’ma def get my real name signed more often! X) So far that’s been John Barrowman, Kai Owen and Anthony Head that have commented on it. This makes Caspe a very happy fangirly!
Of Random Shizzle:
Got a professional photo done with Anthony head. Was rather distressed to note that he’s got short hair! But he was still looking as lush as ever so he was swiftly forgiven. Well, that and he was wearing a leather jacket (yummy!) and I may possibly have groped him a bit whilst hugging him XD …also, my fringe was being surprisingly cooperative for the duration of the shoot which I’m thankful for!
Me and Anthony Head
- Went to Anthony Head’s talk, he got asked the usual questions about Buffy and his appearance in Doctor Who and also mentioned he’s in the upcoming ‘Merlin’ series the BBC will be showing at some point soon- definitely something to look out for!
- Got this gorgeous hand sketched picture of the Eighth Doctor which I just couldn’t resist snatching up!
There was a helluva lot more that happened throughout the day but my brain in still rather fuzzy after all the travelling and squee I’ve done over the weekend! If I’ve omitted anything particularly noteworthy, please don’t hesitate to hit me upside the head and I’ll get it added up!</div></div>
The main thing to note however is that I had a brilliant time, met up with some fantastic people and just generally had a blast, even with the drama that ensured on the Saturday!