I spent this weekend at Satellite 2, an SF con celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Apollo moon landings. It was the first time that I've been to a con since Concussion, which was Eastercon 2006. This was much smaller than Concussion or Interaction (the previous year's WorldCon) and felt more intimate.
The two-day programme was pretty tightly packed, meaning that I had to miss some interesting-sounding stuff and also didn't spend an awful lot of time in the bar. It also meant that I was up at a time of day on Saturday that I had previously refused to acknowledge actually existed. The organisers had thankfully not scheduled anything that I particularly wanted to see at silly O'Clock on Sunday, which meant that I got a more of a lie in that day :-).
The guest of honour was Iain M. Banks, someone who I had never heard speak before but turned out to be eloquent, funny and a really nice guy. I took the opportunity (which I probably wouldn't have done at a larger con) to buy him a drink and have a conversation with him (under the guise of getting a book signed) in the bar later and he turned out to be just as nice and entertaining as he had been on the platform. Mind you, I don't know how many pints he had had by that point ;-). It's a shame I never made it to the Dead Laika Party at the end of the con, but everyone I was with was too tired or had other reasons for leaving early and I didn't really fancy hanging around on my own.
The whole thing was great fun and although I'm disappointed that Albacon 2010 got cancelled due to lack of advance signup, I'm considering going to Odyssey 2010 (next year's Eastercon in London). The only problem is that single rooms are already sold out, so I'd need to find someone to share a twin room with. If anyone's interested, do let me know.