The annual Mensa outing to Dublin Zoo took place at the beginning of this month. It was most enjoyable. I took this pic at the Sealion enclosure while we were waiting for a private visit to the tigers. This bull sealion spotted one of the keepers behind the window and thought it was feeding time again.
It can't be true but it is. The Irish Independent reports that Kenny's Bookshop in Galway is vacating the shop it has occupied for 65 years and converting to an online only operation. I loved that shop. I remember finding a copy of Neil Gaiman's American Gods there. (Yes, Kennys does have a science fiction section). High Street just won't be the same without it.
UPDATE: Just got the Irish Times. The story is on the front page.
My father rang me at 8.40 this morning to ask had I heard the news. Jerome Hynes had passed awayat the age of 45. I knew Jerome when we both attended NUI Galway or UCG as it was then. He was Societies Chairman on the Students Union Executive, a post I would later hold, and since I was involved in several societies our paths crossed frequently. He was a fearless champion for college societies and he brought the same dedication to The Druid Theatre, where he was administrator, and later to the Wexford Opera Festival. His passing is a great loss not only to his family but to the world of Irish Arts.
Interaction was fun. I hardly got to see any of the convention but being in the press office most of the time meant that much of the convention came to me. Actually, now that I think of it, that's not strictly true. I spent a reasonable amount of time in the dealers' room and the exhibits area. I also managed to get to a fair number of parties in the evenings.
Dealing with the press was interesting. The BBC sent two crews. One from Newsnight Scotland (did you know that BBC Scotland has a Newsnight opt out? I didn't) and the other from the regional news programme. STV also sent a crew. This meant I was scurrying round finding people for them to interview. Fortunately, I had some superb assistance in the press room in the form of Laurie Mann, Elaine Nicol, Brad Ackerman and Joy Ward.
The parties were good fun. They took place in the Hilton Hotel in town and we had two entire floors to ourselves. The Hugo Nominees party, hosted by next year's committee – LaCon IV - was sumptuous even if we did have to queue an inordinately long time for food. The Noreascon Thank You party was fun. The rest are a blur. Except of course for the Octocon/Irish Fandom/Sproutlore party which was an exemplar of decorum and dignity. Yeah. Right.