On Saturday afternoon, the Blue Bar at Albert Dock, Liverpool, saw the inaugural meeting of The International Association of ITLAD. In honour of our highly esteemed and well beloved Susan Marie, we congretated together to exchange conversation on things philosophical and quantum. There was also a fair sprinkling of the requisite nonsense talk and laughter!
I managed to obtain photographic evidence of the gathering which can be viewed on www.flickr.com/groups/itlad Enjoy!
Once again you've done us proud!
You've captured the the assembled ITLADians beautifully, what a fantastic eye you have!
It was a wondeful day and evening, thank you to Tony for hosting and to my fellow bloggers and others who attended for making it so special.
It was delightful to meet Susan Marie, I hope you enjoyed meeting us too, Honey! I think once you got over your initial awe, you seemed to enjoy yourself. Talking toot with The Dark Philosopher has never been so much fun, has it!?
I hope your journey back was smooth and hassle free and you return to New Jersey with fond and happy memories.
I look forward to meeting you again!
And how fabulous to speak to Robin, it was great to hear from you although I apologise for not saying much as the line was so crackly.
A simply amazing day!
Karl sends his love to all and will comment soon.
Thanks for posting the pictures. Did anyone take your picture?
Everyone looked like they were having a wonderful time.
thnz woodsprite..! great pics...
i tried to call..but cudnt get thru..as i knew...so i missed being there with u....anyway thers always a next time....
Ruth and Roshni: One day we will ALL get together, I hope! You were there in our thoughts anyway!
Yes, Ruth, I believe there is a sneaky shot of me there somewhere!
High Noon, Saturday;
I walked along the waterfront with a sense of magnitude about the atmosphere. It was a surprisingly warm and sunny day, the reflections across the glass-like dock casting an eerily alternate vision of the reality I was perceiving. The cobbles below my feet echoing to the sound of my step as I reached the entrance to the hotel.
The foyer was empty, but for two rather alluringly comfy sofas, but I sensed this wasn't where I was to meet the guest of honour for the inaugural International ITLADic gathering, so I strode to the elevators and ascended to the next floor, or the next level (to make the subtle ITLADic analogies more obvious)
The elevator stopped and a mechanical voice though the ether announced "Reception", the doors parted, to reveal the myth, the woman, the enigma, Susan Marie Kovalinksy................grinning and shaking like a 5 year old on Christmas morning.
Anyway, after a lengthy hug and some of my almost legendary settling down tactics, and with dear SMK clinging onto my arm, most welcomely, we walked around to Blue Bar while she told me ALL about her time in London.
After helping her imbibe a couple of large scotches, I had just began to calm her down when the legend that is AP and his lovely wife Penny arrived.
This of course sent dear SMK frantic again! But she was soon lolling like a good 'un with us in the unfeasibly low but vastly comfy sofas.
We had a good couple of hours talking all manner of nonsense before the doors began to sway with the arrival of ITLADian after ITLADian.
Johar (JoJo) arrived and swept SMK off for a crafty fag, Dorje (Tony) was a joy to meet; seriously, his artwork with the circles is stunning and he even pursuaded me to go and pose for a photograph for him on the Dock with a lifebelt ring as my background!!!
Baphomet (Dave) and soon to be new BLOG/FORUM member Nefertiti (go on Kath *wink*) arrived looking both beautiful and excited (and that was just Dave) *smile* Woodsprite (Di) arrived, clutching her camera with a Machievellian smile, Ed sauntered in, as only Ed can do, Rich brightened up the whole place in his usual way and Aloha Gary appeared and immediately berated me for the price of the beer! *smile* Dr Alan Roberts grabbed me and we spoke of deeply existential hooplah for an hour with a couple of awful gags thrown in, and it was lovely to meet young Tony with his Father, another potential new ITLADian.
I must also say hello and thank you to Rebecca and Ian who accosted me in Blue Bar to say they'd overheard me and were very interested, so I hope they come along here as well.
Plus the bar staff who quickly worked out that when I appeared in the vicinity of the bar to immediately prepare a large scotch and water and a freshly opened bottle of red wine.
It was also superb that Robin took the time to call me on my mobile phone to speak to me, Tony, SMK, Jo, Gary and Di. And I took my phone out onto the dock to speak to Robin's daughter. Hi Lily. *waves*
Several hours and much wine later I escorted a somewhat inebriated but equally ecstatic SMK back to her hotel. Once again with her clamped onto my arm, again MOST welcomed but this time also much required to prevent her falling into the water! *smile*
She said she had enjoyed one of the most wonderful days of her life, and that Tony and I were just as we told her we would be, just two fellas who talk toot and deeply intellectual whatnot whilst maintaining the level of quite horrendous jokes.
I got dear SMK back to her hotel, gave her another hug and thanked her, for her time, her effort and her commitment to our cause.
It was a personally wonderful day for me to finally meet my dear friend of 18 months, and I know that everyone in attendance was delighted to meet her and we all had a tremendous day, lots of laughter, much very interesting discussions, lashings of wine and the odd bar snack as well.
Johar, Woodsprite, Aloha Gary, Rich and I then all retired to another of our increasing list of ITLADic pubs, the beautiful BRIDGE INN in the historic Port Sunlight on the Wirral where Tony and Penny met us later in the evening as we had a booking at a local restaurant to end the evening.
Jo and I would like to thank Tony and Penny for a beautiful Chinese meal (My Duck with Stuffing Prawns was FABO!!!!), and we ambled back to our hotel around midnight at the end of a wonderfully ITLADic and momentous day.
We toasted all those missing ITLADians and I showed SMK the beautiful comments on my BLOG post from those who wished they could attend; Cam, Robin, Roshni, RafromCa and Jesamyn and SMK was deeply moved and we raised a glass to you all.
Thank You to everyone who made the effort to come along and enjoy a wonderful afternoon. It was my delight to see you all again, and meet new people, Dorje in particular. It was wonderful talking to you and your art books are stunning mate. I cannot wait to see what you do with my photo.
Kath, see you soon dear. Ed, Di, Rich, Gary, we will all get back together in a few weeks for an afternoon and evening of more fun. And Penny, thank you too.
Absolutely wonderful day everyone.
We have more photos to upload when I have time.
I'll always remember being 'strangled' by SMK in Blue Bar
I have just recovered from my swooning at Wondrous BRILLIANT photos, and accompanying FANTASTIC descriptive Script which takes we who were sadly unable to attend right into the scene in wonderful virtual Itladic style!!!After the whole weekend watch-gazing and googling*time UK* and wondering,speculating and imagining, now the splendid Panorama is laid out before me to wallow in whenever I wish!!! THANK YOU THANK YOU especially Di and Karl and I am awaiting SMK's take on all!!!!
*happy in Sydney*
Jesamyn.ADORE YOU ALL!!!!
Jesamyn: Oh dear sweet Jes.
When I was out on the Dock after Dorje had taken my photograph, I sent an Astral message to you and then spoke to SMK of you so you were very much in our thoughts.
Indeed we talked some more of my idea to hold a residential CONSCIOUSNESS WEEKEND and it was stated by many in attendance that it would be perfect to have you there (especially knowing your esoteric background as I do)
We have some more photos (including some hilarious ones and a really great one of SMK in my Pin-Striped Trilby!!) which we will upload as soon as possible.
Probably tomorrow now but thank you for your comments Jes, I'm glad you enjoyed Di's photos and my descriptions.
Di and Karl: Your collaborative report of this event has been a joy to read and see!
Di: Thank you for contributing photos to the Flickr group. The candid shots are fun. You truely have a knack for catching the emotion & energy of the moment.
Karl: Thank you for not jumping behind the sofa when Di's camera aimed your way. You're very photogenic & the pictures do not distract from the mystery that is you... you'll always be an enigma. Thanks for the use of your mobile!
Tony & Penny: It's so nice to see the two of you! Did you ever imagine this scenario years ago when ITLAD was beginning to take form?
Susan: I'm so happy you took the leap over the water to see our friends. I'd love to hear all the details when you've recovered. Like Ricky Ricardo said, "you got some 'splainin' to do"!
To all: It is such an honor to be part of this international band of friends.
Thank You Robin.
I am uploading some more pictures right now, so I will post a link in a few minutes. Hope you enjoy!
It was great fun to meet everyone and to expand my head with conversation. Thanks for the invitation guys... Am still struggling with reconcilling Blogger with my victorian apptitude for technolgy so will have to email Karl your halo dirrect. Am away for a bit in the lakes but have got some good reading to take with me
Dorje: Tony my friend! Fabulous to hear from you. Glad we could expand your head, it's a LOT of fun isn't it!!!
Yes please, email me directly, that would be wonderful. Enjoy the lakes and the reading (sounds rather Marv to me!!)
Everyone: Right we have uploaded some more pics from the glorious day taken by myself, Johar and Dorje.
Here is the link to the flickr page I have uploaded them to. Hope you enjoy!
There are some cracking ones of SMK and I, plus lots of people wearing my Trilby!!!
Photos from Inaugural International ITLADic Gathering (Albert Dock October 11th 2008)
MORE treats for we sad and envious creatures who worship from afar!!!Sorry I didn't comment sooner.. (on latest adorable and story telling photos!!) in my usual rambling way I will just say that I always left one Christmas present till later to open.. (once it was February!!)well we all have our funny little ways
:0.. I like to know there is still a surprise tucked away (or something!!) so it is with the photos.. I want to keep going to see them and wallow there when I feel blue!!! Sorry... LOVE them sooo much and so glad nobody shy as you are all beautiful AND brilliant!!
Jesamyn: I'm so pleased you enjoyed the narrative and the photos. Thank You Jez.
A jolly Marvellous day out!
perhaps we should call next years consciousness weekend, "ITLADIAN Lolling101" to ensure people come with the right approach, or maybe DAEMONIA'09?
Many thanks to you for making lots of fun!
Aloha Gary: Oh I agree most heartily. A significant part of the CONSCIOUSNESS WEEKEND will be Lolling! I'm even considering adding a small section to my lecture to describe the art of lolling!
Many thanks, again, for all the photos.
SM: A trip of a lifetime, I would say! It seems you were very well cared for.
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