Omg what a weekend. It started with a bunch of bloggers (@fenngirl, @LauraAWNTYM, @InsomniacMummy, @Bumblings) in Hyundai #CMCar6 rolling up on my drive at lunchtime on Friday. We hot-footed over to @Tara_Cain to pick her up, while on the way I learnt to drive an automatic 4×4 (who knew the breaks would react so quickly, huh? And apparently, you need to put the stick right into D to stop it making odd noises.) then head down to London. Made it in good time, up until we got to the hotel, then got lost. Yes, we got to the hotel first, and then we got lost. Stupid hotels with no frigging car-parking, dammit.
Anyway, I lugged my 2 boxes of dildos and goodies, suitcase, camera bag and box of Utterly Scrummy brownies to my room in what could only be described as the 5th floor of hell. Travelodge London City Road? Not pleasant. Average temperature of about 40C wherever you went. Sticky tables. Bedroom floors that smelled like…well, not fun times. Staff who were often painfully slow. But hey! It was a roof over my head. I headed straight out for a drink with Haz and Fuzz, two damn awesome ladies from The Land of Me (I need to get back to visit them, sharpish) and consumed wine, outside a bar, in the rain, sharing stories. Loved it. (Seriously miss you guys already.)
Saturday morning, I fell out of bed and grabbed my shit together. I knew it was going to be a mental day. Blogger Calendar, social networking, my Photography Workshop, generally taking photos, drinking, meeting Trevor (Oh. Em. Effing. Holy. Gee. *slurp*) and then decorating dildos.
And it WAS mental, but it WAS awesome. I mentally thanked my sponsor Love it, Love it, Love it and threw myself into the venue. Loads of people missed their Blogger Calendar slots but those that turned up had a laugh. I wish there was something we could have done for those who missed out, but HOLY HELL the admin involved was immense. It was a shame the conference was running late as I saw this was the problem for the first few groups. Will we do it again? Ask me in January. I snapped a few other photos, not many, as you know, I obviously wanted to enjoy the conference too.
Only…I very quickly realised I wasn’t there for the conference. As I drifted from from stand to stand, listened in on people’s discussions about the seminars, and watched as a mass exodus left the writing workshop (you may like to look at this…), I realised that I didn’t actually seem to fit in there. I realised I wasn’t out to “improve my blog” in any particular way; it’s not my niche. It’s not my “one and only”. I’m a photographer, and I just blog my shit here for me, not for the benefit of others. Sometimes I blog on my pro blog, but it’s subject specific and is more like a “what I did today” to keep clients up to date. The only stuff that will happen on this blog that really is for others is the upcoming photography tutorials, soon as I pull my finger out.
So I went to one session. I was there only to support my friends who were speaking. It felt right to be there. And I only left early just after they finished speaking because it was so cold, I couldn’t actually feel my right hand.
My own session? Well I have to be honest, I loved it. I never ever saw myself giving a photography workshop, but loved every minute of it. I had no notes planned at all. I knew if I was going to do it, I was going to have to rely on natural instinct. It’s how I take my own photos, so why wouldn’t it apply on instruction? Well I talked, about angles, and framing, and positions, and perspective, and concepts, and food, and portraits, and objects and LOADS of stuff. All in 55 minutes. They were up out of their chairs taking photos on everything from camera phones to fully fledged dSLRs. People tweeted their images and thoughts. I missed loads as others tweeted me directly, but I barely stopped to look at my phone.
Three UK hosted an after party (by the way – please PLEASE vote for my team’s app “Who, What, Where, When” to win the Mums On Three competition? You can even laugh at my hideously cheesy video. I hate begging for voting stuff so it’s most likely this will be the only time I’ll ask) and there was wine. LOTS of wine. I didn’t actually drink much. Why? Because the gorgeous Sandra from Thinking Slimmer managed to sneak Trevor in through the doors for 20 minutes.
Holy mother-humping hotness. That. Is. All.
…nope. That’s it, no more words on that. *cough*
Saturday night was what could only be described undoubtedly the best party I have EVER hosted. 28 women, crammed into a tiny but GORGEOUS conference room in the Travelodge, with nearly 40 dildos, goody bags, lube, crafting stuffs, snacks, alcohol, chips and a LOT of cackling. I swear, I actually felt sick from the laughter. And I tell you what, considering Eden Fantasys are in the US, they absolutely shat upon all responses (or lack thereof) from UK sex ty companies. If/when I have another party, Eden Fantasys would be at the top of my list before I approached anyone else. Fact.
I’m gutted I barely had 30 seconds to take any photos, but I’m hoping attendees will join the flickr group (by invitation only, for OBVIOUS reasons! Further people may be added once the group is established – I refuse to expose anyone who doesn’t wish to be exposed…) and upload their photos. Or just mail them to me and I’ll post them. In any case, the photos I’ve seen so far have been HILARIOUS. I’m willing to bet the Instagram team were wondering WTF for much of Saturday night.
Sunday – roll into Starbucks just a few doors down from the hotel, receive “The Big Penis Book” gift from Sian, load the car with remaining dildos, craft stuff, cake and swag, and cruise at a steady
100mph 70mph home. Did I enjoy the weekend? HELL YES. Did I enjoy Cybermummy? Kind of. Did I get anything out of it? Not really, I don’t think I’m the right person for it, and suspect others would get much more than me. Would I go again? I don’t know. I’d love to do another workshop; hell I’ll do a workshop anywhere anyone will have me if I can help.
I haven’t posted any photos because I’m swamped with work. I have about a thousand people to thank. I have a shit load of other things I could write about the weekend. No bad points (well, one minor one where someone was rude and pissed me off, but I’ve since decided that clearly my efforts to be polite and friendly are best directed elsewhere) and loads of epic moments. That’s what mattered. I had a laugh. And maybe I have a bit to think about.