Kevin and I were planning to spend the morning on Ian Watson’s Orwell Walking Tour, which visited locations in the city mentioned in the author’s book, Homage to Catalonia. However, the tour group ended up being so large that it was hard to get close enough to Ian to hear what he was saying, so we bunked off and headed down to the waterfront. The Columbus Monument is a masterpiece of colonialist art, managing to be deeply offensive in a variety of ways.
On the way back we visited the main market, which is awesome. So Much Food. In particular lots of fish and squid and shellfish and off-beat stuff like sea urchins. There was meat too, including lamb’s heads which are apparently a local delicacy.
After eating rather a lot of seafood we headed for the convention and did a tour of the dealers’ room. I made sure I had a membership to Dortmund next year, and we signed up as pre-supporters of the Belfast bid for 2019. Kevin passed the Banner of WSFS on to the Helsinki people. There was a stall selling the most beautiful patterned leggings, but the XL size was too small for me. *sigh*
Then it was time for the panel on Spanish science fiction. Because fabulous Spanish fans have been doing such a great job of promoting local writers there wasn’t much new for me, but for you folks here’s a few recommendations that are translated into English.
- The Map of Time – Felix J Palma (novel)
- Castles in Spain (anthology of the best of Spanish SF)
- Terra Nova (anthology of contemporary Spanish SF
- Spanish Women of Wonder (anthology of Spanish SF by women)
I’m not sure on the availability of the women’s anthology. I got my copy through their Kickstarter. I can’t see it for sale yet, but the book only arrived the other week so maybe it will go live once people have recovered from the convention.
Generally the con seems to be going pretty well, but we have noticed a few small things that experienced con runners would not do. First up, don’t segregate your registration lines by membership number, because no one can remember their number when they get to the con; use last name instead. Second, don’t have different streams of programming starting at staggered times. That will lead to people getting up and walking out in the middle of one panel to get to a different one they want to see more that is just starting.
We went back to the hotel early because the Finns were holding a 50th birthday celebration for TJ, one of the regular Finncon attendees. Jeff VanderMeer may remember him as the guy who wiped the floor with us in the Mad Scientist Laugh competition a few years back.
Then it was time for the second Business Meeting. Amiens was duly elected as the 2018 Eurocon. Kevin, as a neutral observer, was asked to count the votes, which he did with his usual efficiency. He’s very good at this stuff.
The existing ESFS Board was re-elected unopposed saved for Bridget Wilkinson who is stepping down after 25 years. We gave her some presents and a standing ovation. Her place as Awards Administrator is being taken by Carol Connelly from Ireland.
I did my delegate duty and voted in the ESFS Awards. The results will be announced tomorrow.
And now we are making dinner plans. More seafood may be consumed.