This past weekend I attended Melbourne Supanova and fun antics ensued. For the first time in a very long time I didn’t have any of the usual pre-show excitement. Nor any real desire to go even though I knew I’d enjoy seeing friends. Having no motivation to do things has been a feeling I have been dealing with in general this year. So it wasn’t really anything new exactly, but I definitely missed that pre-show excitement. I think the fact that last year was the first year that went by without an Armageddon/AMCE event has a lot to do with it. The lack of excitement and general unmotivated feeling, it was such a massive part of my life for decade.
I managed to push myself to go and I really am glad I went, because I really did have a great time. Over the last few years the number of guests, I’ve been interested in meeting has dwindled. Either because I’m simply not interested or I’ve met them before, this is good for the bank account though. This year there was one guest I was interested in meeting, Elizabeth Henstridge. I am still very much into Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. lately. And a HUGE thanks to one of my best friends Ashley, who flew back to America the month before. But asked me to get Elizabeth’s Autograph for her, without that push I may not have ever attended.
First off I was frustrated to find that the price of parking had gone up from $10 to $15. Which is rather expensive given given that secure parking in the city can be less and your cars are out in the open here. Unfortunately, there is no where else to park nearby so you don’t really have a choice. Maybe they are trying to get people to take public transport instead.
Otherwise the event was pretty much the same as previous years, not a whole lot had changed. Queues were still a bit confusing with different staff giving different directions. I know these things happen but it’s still annoying. At least this time the staff I spoke to throughout the weekend were nice enough and not as rude as I’ve experienced previously.
There was an issue on Saturday morning, as a friends and I were leaving the main pavilion heading for photos. We spent about ten minutes getting through the crowd at the main doors, just to be advised the exit was at the other end of the building. So we had to spend another twenty minutes getting to the other end of the building and through the crowd. We could not see any signs advising of this.
The only other issue I have with this event and it’s more related to the venue that the event itself. Is that everything is spread out and it’s quite a decent walk between areas. There’s the Main Pavilion, then you have to trek up the hill to Artist’s Alley, and to where the photos and autographs are. I can imagine that it would be a real struggle for anyone with disabilities or who have trouble walking.
I love the new system for pre-purchasing tokens. Instead of having to queue at a token booth or having to print out online purchased tickets. Instead you can just purchase them online and then they can scan the tokens directly off your phone. I understand that this system would be harder the more tokens you have but if you only have a few it’s perfect. Just have to make sure that your phone is charged and you have a portable charger, don’t want to take chances.
I also noticed that the Photo Booths had signs on them that said ‘No Hugs Please’. My first thought was ‘fat chance with John Barrowman here’ but it seemed like an interesting addition. Although the guests seemed to be doing it anyway.
Fun Photo with Elizabeth
As previously mentioned, I was only really interesting in meeting one guest, Elizabeth Henstridge. And since I had my epic fun photo with Ming-Na, I knew I had to think of something brilliant for my photo with Elizabeth. I was excited for my photo opportunity, I had been concerned after seeing the ‘No hugs’ sign. However, Elizabeth was absolutely lovely and she had no issues with my photo idea.
The conversation went along the lines off. “I have a favour to ask, will you jump on my back and pretend to strangle me?”. First there was a look followed by “Are you sure? I’m heavy”. I just looked back at her and was internally thinking, she’s one of the smallest people I have ever met. But I responded that it would be fine, she is not the only person I’ve asked to jump on my back after all.
As we are having our fun photo taken, we can just hear laughter from the queue of people waiting for photos. One of which was my mate Jodie. I was so happy with this photo and couldn’t wait to collect my print straight away.
Getting Elizabeth’s Autograph
As the autograph queues were rather small I decided to take the chance and go and get my autographs from Elizabeth. I placed the fun photo down in front of Elizabeth and she liked it so much she took a photo of it for herself. When she signed it with “This is everything” it made it event more special, to create such moments with these amazing people. I did the years of attending events and just getting the usual smile photos. But nothing compared to enjoyment of doing something different and fun. It makes it much more memorable, not just for me but also for the guests which makes it extra special.
As my mate Ashley had asked me to get her an autograph from Elizabeth, I grabbed that for her whilst I was there. When Ashley had met her the previous year, Elizabeth had actually posted a reel of Ashley on Instagram. So I had that video out and told Elizabeth I was getting an autograph for the person in the video. Elizabeth remembered Ashley and even remembered which photo Ashley had gotten signed, so she grabbed a different one. Now that is an impressive memory.
As this was happening a friend came up behind me to say hello. It happened to me a mutual friend of Ashley and mine so than we both started talking to Elizabeth about Ashley. We explained she was quite upset that she couldn’t stay the extra month to see Elizabeth again. She signed the photo for Ashley and then we headed off and I took a photo and sent it to Ashley.
Fun with Friends
Most of the day I spent hanging around with Jodie and Kara. I did catch up with my friend Sarah and her husband as they were queuing up to meet Tom Wellington. I was very proud and continued to show off my photo with Elizabeth throughout the day, how can you not find joy in that though. Plus it would always make people smile and laugh and that makes me happy.
I went and visited friends at the First Contact Conventions booth, with resulted in some fun chats about the future. Also spent some time wandering around with my friend Shona and her husband Dave. Shona was cosplaying as Lara Croft.
I also caught up with a mate who I see maybe once a year. Over eleven years ago we used to work at Officeworks together, where we were nicknamed Zig and Zag. Now she is working for Nintendo and I just think she is amazing. I’m so glad I saw her at this event though because we had a great chat and a real ‘deep and meaningful’ one. Sometimes I think back and I’m surprised our friendship has lasted so long, we worked together so long ago and only for a short period of time. But when we see each other again it’s like no time has passed and we have a great friendship, I love it.
All these people I spent time with and I hardly got any photos. I need to get better at taking photos with my friends. Not just to have photos, but for the memories as well. I’ll need to start taking selfies, these people are so important to me as friends and Con Family that I want the reminders. Especially when its only once or twice a year.
I had no intentions of returning to the event the following day. In fact I had told everyone I had seen Saturday that I was only going the day. But the Saturday was so much fun and then I found out friends were only going the Sunday. I had not seen these friends in a long time so decided that I would drop in to the showgrounds to catch up with them. I was heading to the other side of the city anyway so figured it wasn’t that out of the way to stop. I’m glad I did too because even though I was only there for an hour I got to catch up with not just the friends I went in to see but others as well.
When I arrived my friends Laura and Rachel were in the line to get their photo with Elizabeth so I couldn’t help myself and decided to get another one. I arrived JUST in time to buy the token and then went and met the ladies in the queue. They let me go in for my photo first. Most of my friends know I like to get crazy photos sometimes, and they like to watch. Although this time I was only going to get a fairly normal photo with her no funny business. As I walk in for my photo Elizabeth just looks at me wondering what I’m gonna ask her to do this time, I just told her I wanted a normal photo.
After the photos Rachel went off to a panel and Laura and I went for a wander around the show. Whilst looking at different exhibitor stalls in the main pavilion I bumped into some other friends. Well bumped isn’t quite the word she came up behind me and surprised me. I hadn’t seen her since the last AMCE event in 2016. Lily and I had a good chat and brief catch up with both her and her partner Mark. Lily helped me through some major life realisations back in 2016. I am still very much appreciative to her for that and our friendship. In so many ways we are completely opposite people but we still have a great friendship.
Unfortunately, as I had to be somewhere else I couldn’t spend much more time at the event. So after a little more wandering I took a photo with the twins and then headed off. Overall it was a great fun weekend for catching up with friends. And a reminder of how important these events are for catching up wit friends and creating memories. And it was an absolute pleasure to meet the lovely Elizabeth Henstridge and have such great moments with her during the weekend.