So here's my schedule:
Tuesday June 25: Get my hair cut.
Wednesday June 26: Fret about my haircut. Possibly do an emergency shampoo even though I will have just gotten a very professional one the day before. Also debate for an absurdly long time about my choice of shoes. Print the boarding pass. Do some prepacking. Unpack everything because I'll become convinced I forgot something important. Prepack again. Check the 10 day weather forecasts to confirm no blizzards are scheduled (for some reason, there's always a blizzard when I have to flight to or from O'Hare). Discover in lieu of blizzards, massive thunderstorms and tornadoes are anticipated. Shrug philosophically and prepack and unprepack again, this time with umbrellas.
Thursday June 27: Pack frantically. Tell Scooter he won't miss me one little bit. Feel guilty because I'm lying to him. Drive to the airport. Spend many hours in the airport because my flight is delayed, thanks to massive thunderstorms and tornadoes in Nome, Alaska. Maybe a volcano there too; it hardly matters. Search desperately for anyplace that sells ice cream. Go to the ladies room two or three times (depending on volcanic activity), dragging my suitcase with me as I go. Read an entire junky novel while I wait. Eventually get on the airplane and even more eventually, arrive in Chicago. Take a cab to the hotel, where no one is awaiting me. Discover there's nothing on TV that night, but channel flip for a couple of hours anyway.
Friday June 28: Eat a huge room service breakfast, if the hotel still has room service. If it doesn't, feel disappointed that I won't be able to eat a huge room service breakfast. Instead, scurry to wherever I can eat breakfast and do same. Hope my hair looks okay, since there was no time to wash it. Get picked up at 7:30 AM in the hotel lobby (fortunately for me, that'll feel like 8:30 AM). Get escorted to:
Ten Years of YALSA’s Teens’ Top Ten
Friday, June 28, 2013 - 8:30am to 12:00pm
Join YALSA for a half day preconference to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Teens’ Top Ten (TTT)! The Teens' Top Ten is a "teen choice" list, where teens nominate and choose their favorite books of the previous year. Learn about the program from current TTT groups, receive tips on how to run a similar program in your library, and meet authors who have appeared on the Teens’ Top Ten list (Susan Beth Pfeffer*, Cory Doctorow, Sarah Dessen, Marie Lu, and Laurie Halse Anderson).
Be certain to say hello to Marie Lu, since we were just on a panel together at the IRA convention, where she was a good deal smarter and more articulate than me, but I, on the other hand, maneuvered it so she had to share a microphone and I had one all to myself. Then, once the program is over, if no one else wants or needs me, scurry to the Art Institute Of Chicago, which is a fabulous museum. It's been years since I was last there, but paintings don't go bad. Return to my hotel. Fret some more about my hair. Deal with the room service/ no room service issue (at least by then I'll know). Channel flip obsessively. Try to read my emails, and hope there's one from Marci telling me Scooter is doing all right (while tactfully leaving out any mention of his act of protest on the living room carpet). Finish reading another junky novel. Curse myself right before falling asleep for forgetting to print the boarding pass.
Saturday June 29: Eat a very big breakfast somewhere. Empty out my enormous pocketbook into my suitcase and throw all my clothes in there as well. Get my boarding pass printed. Find my way to the convention center. Walk through all the booths taking as much free stuff as my enormous pocketbook can hold. Focus in particular on pens, pencils, and notepads, ignoring the fact that I still have pens, pencils and notepads from the last ALA conference I went to four years ago. Justify taking all the free candy I can get my hands on by the fact my flight will undoubtedly be delayed for a week or two and who knows if I can get any food at O'Hare Airport. Hide all the candy and most of the pens, pencils, and notepads from the fine people at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Get to their booth well before I'm supposed to, and try to stand there inconspicuously until they're ready for me. Sign books (including ARCs of The Shade Of The Moon) from 11:30-12:30. Hope someone is there who wants me to sign their books. Make social chit chat with the fine HMH people, so they won't notice if no one wants me to sign their books. Regret having passed up that extra Reese's Peanut Butter Cup at the booth way at the other end of the convention center. Say goodbye to the fine HMH people, who will now be fully focused on the next of their autographing authors, and grab a cab to O'Hare Airport. Spend the requisite number of hours hearing rumors about volcanic activity in Hawaii holding up our flight. Finally get on the airplane. Finish reading my third (or maybe fourth) junky novel. Pick up my car, drive home, and inform a noisy and aggrieved Scooter, that I missed him considerably more than he missed me. Clean up his Saturday protest. Put away the pens, pencils, and notepads, where they can keep company with the ones from four years before. Throw the clothes out of the suitcase onto the chair in my bedroom, because I don't have the energy to hang them up. Notice that I left the umbrella somewhere in Chicago Eat all the candy, so I won't be tempted to on Sunday. Go to bed, trying not to fret about the haircut I'll get for the Decatur Book Festival Labor Day Weekend!
*My guess on why I'm listed first is Age Before Beauty.