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Who? gwenllian, alex, and assorted other malcontents

What? A nodermeet. Duh.

When? September 2-5, 2005. That's Labor Day weekend

Where? West Lafayette, Indiana

Why? Because we can!

We moved into our new residence a few weeks ago but have not yet had a chance to perform the housewarming ritual, or indeed make a suitable blood sacrifice. We would therefore like to invite YOU (see that pointing finger? YOU!) to help us address that little omission lest the gods be angered. You wouldn't want that to happen, would you?

How to get there
By road: West Lafayette (and, by extension, Greater Lafayette) is in north-western Indiana, about a third of the way between Indianapolis and Chicago on I-65 (exit 175). Also, both US 52 and US 231 run through West Lafayette.
By rail: Lafayette is served by the Cardinal (51) from New York to Chicago via Huntington, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, etc. Check Amtrak for fares and schedules.
By ship, and spacecraft: Mmm, nope.
By bus: Greyhound. $98 round trip from anywhere within an 800-mile radius
Underground, by tunneling from China: Nobody ever tunnels from China.
By air: If you're flying yourself, Purdue International Airport (LAF). The less aviatorial public can arrive at Indianapolis International Airport (IND). We're willing to make an airport run or two but, because of the distance, anyone needing pickup on short notice may have to wait a while.

Approximate distance from select major cities:

Indianapolis   60 miles
Chicago       125 miles
Columbus      240 miles
St Louis      280 miles
Detroit       300 miles
Nashville     350 miles
New York      773 miles
Seoul        6640 miles

Travel Assistance
If you really want to come and have serious trouble raising the funds to do so, let us know and we'll see what we can do.

Where to stay
We have substantial amounts of floor space and enough space for 2-3 tents in the back yard. We're still acquiring furniture so we don't know how many people we'll be able to accommodate in beds and similar contraptions. brainwave and evadyne are just three blocks away and have graciously offered more space.
Plenty of parking is available for our four-wheeled friends.

The nearest hotels (1.7 miles):
Family Inn of America
1920 Northwestern Avenue
Prestige Inn
1217 Sagamore Parkway West

What to do
We have a few events in mind but the schedule, to the extent to which there is one, is fluid and subject to improvement.

Evening: We are well aware of the affinity between noders and karaoke, so it will be an option at Joo Joo's on US 52.
Nearer Purdue, The Chocolate Shop is a renowned dojo of alcohol consumption that has given us such luminaries of liquor as IWhoSawTheFace. Transportation will be provided for those who plan on clouding their judgement and impairing their driving ability.

Morning: Recover from Friday night's excesses
Around noon: We're working on something interesting. The strings that need to be pulled to make it happen are currently out of the country so we'll let it be a mystery until we have a Yes. Ok, not happenin'. Gwen's dad, Professor Emeritus of Nuclear Engineering at Purdue, was to be cajoled into giving a tour of the Purdue University pool reactor - you can see the glow from the Cherenkov radiation at the bottom of the pool and everything!! Unfortunately, he won't be back in the country for a couple of weeks yet... we'll just save it for next time.
Afternoon: Make a trip to Von's, purveyor of fine books, eclectic music, and an amazing assortment of shiny stones
Evening: We will lead an expedition to Wolf Park, a wolf sanctuary and research park in Battle Ground. Saturday evenings are "howl nights" where you can let loose your inner lupine in the company of the real thing.

Morning: Scandalise people arriving for church across the street. You've already stolen their parking spaces.
Noon: Brunch at the Route 66 diner on US 52. Route 66 is an offshoot of the more famous locally-owned Triple XXX. Standard diner prices apply. We'll pick up the tip seeing how you're all going to be paying way more than expected for gas on the way here.
Afternoon: Do as ye please
Evening: Get drunk. Make Wiccanpiper do Ethel Merman impressions rescheduled for Saturday - he claims some sort of family shindig, but we know we're not loved *sniff*

Prepare for departure; depart. Forget your wallet with all credit cards in it.

If we have both mcc and Briarcub in the house, a Carcassonne game of epic proportions is a distinct possibility.

Food and drink
We've made no firm plans yet but you will be fed. If we run out of food, the last person to wake up each day will become lunch. Feel free to suggest stuff. Feel just as free to bring stuff with you. Greater Lafayette also has an excellent selection of tastes for eating out. Local eateries include:

Krispy Kreme
3 Greek restaurants
4 Indian restaurants
4 Korean restaurants
1 Turkish restaurant
7 or so Japanese restaurants
more Mexican places than you'd believe this far north
many frozen custard places including a Culver's
as well as the usual array of sandwich, pizza, steak, buffet, hamburger etc. etc. establishments.

Being a college town, there is of course also no lack of liquor stores within easy driving/walking/staggering distance.

Of course, there will be eatables in the house as well.
Food that is likely to be here:

Russian Cream
gwen's Death by Chocolate cake and/or Banana Cake

We already have a blender
Although this is a housewarming gathering, we do not expect (or particularly want) domestic gifts or knick-knacks. Unless they involve dirty jokes or bad puns, that is.

Will be here unless ransom is paid
Auron (can give rides from Columbus)
izubachi (can give rides from Wisconsin and Chicago)
A pair of non-noder visitors from abroad.

Have paid lip service but have not yet sent hostages
Laura Elizabeth

Beg to be excused but will be the first against the wall
borgo and borgette - soccer is simply not an acceptable excuse. And don't think you can get on our good side with this transparent 'cardiac surgery' ploy, we know you don't love us
LaggedyAnne + sister

Pissed that everyone going to Indiana told him they all intended to have deaths in the family and couldn't come to his wedding
kthejoker (who just forfeited his firstborn)

Send a message to gwenllian or alex to be included in the definites or maybes. We're looking forward to having you.

What really happened:

Friday morning: gwenllian returns from work, having gotten off at 7:45 am. alex gets off work from telecommuting at 9:00 am. Hilarious frantic preparatory hijinks ensue. izubachi is advised that arriving at 10:00 would probably not be a good idea.

Friday afternoon: A short nap is had by gwenllian. hunt05 is the first to arrive at ca 4-ish, after taking an unintentional tour of lovely downtown West Lafayette. Do not, I repeat, do not trust mapquest. It hates you. Discussion of the literature of R.L. Stine. Phone calls are made in search of Wuukiee and mcc. izubachi is the second, after taking an unintentional tour of the lovely Purdue campus. One-way streets hate you. Repeat discussion of the literature of R.L. Stine.
Friday evening: Wiccanpiper and BriarCub arrive with a kitty litter box of assorted wines and a Tupperware container of Carcassonne tiles big enough to hold a three-year-old. BriarCub becomes immersed in a R.L. Stine book left lying around by the 11-yr-old. Dinner is sandwich fixin's with Farmer's Market veggies and real bread, not that supermarket stuff. The booze begins to flow. gwenllian wimps out and takes a nap, during which Auron, brainwave and evadyne arrive. Good conversation, with the appropriate amount of 4 to 5-second silences, ensues. Everyone eventually goes night-night.

Saturday morning: gwenllian and alex, for some ungodly reason, wake up around 8. Prompted by their aching backs, they go yard saleing in search of better seating, without success. Breakfast is had, phone calls are made attempting to retrieve brainwave, evadyne and izubachi, who arrive with a bonus guest, PMDboi. Noders are assembled, and the expedition sallies forth to Von's. Waaaay too much money is spent on assorted sparkly stuff, books, stuffed critters, and music. After Von's, the next stop is Global Fest, complete with ethnic foods, craft demonstrations, music etc.
Having had their fill of cultures, our heroes adjourn to Ollie's, purveyors of frozen custard, which is like ice cream only much more so. Phone calls are made to coordinate meetup with Wuukiee and mcc, and the caravan heads to Wolf Park. Due to inadequate planning by gwenllian, we arrive 45 minutes early and are entertained by the virtuoso juggling of PMDboi, and the not-quite-as-virtuoso attempts of the assembled noders to imitate him.
At 7:15, the gates open, and Wuukiee and mcc join the party. New Guinea singing dogs, foxes, and wolves are admired. Wolf Howl Night commences, with a wonderful talk on communication in wolves, and noders howl with the wolves. After the demonstration, the party adjourns back to the ranch.
More sandwiches, as well as 3 varieties of Russian Cream, are ingested, in addition to large quantities of alcohol. There is guitar music courtesy of hunt05 and BriarCub. At 10 pm, the threatened epic Carcassonne game commences, lasting until almost 5:30 a.m. - the team of izubachi and gwenllian wins!! Everyone goes beddy-bye, except the ones that did so several hours previously.

Sunday morning: Wakeup is at 10 am, except for hunt05 who had to leave early this morning for a family emergency - hope everything's ok! No, not ok at all. Fuck. Noonish sees almost everyone at the Route 66 diner, where we have our personalities/emotional state diagnosed by the Fortune Fish. After brunch, Wiccanpiper and BriarCub as well as izubachi head home. The hardcore crew retire back to the house, where alex takes a nap, Auron and Vandewal are cruelly forced to watch Killer Condom, and Auron is introduced to Happy Tree Friends and Greg the Bunny.
Sunday afternoon: Afer several hours of TV torture, Auron and Vandewal both cry Uncle and decide to head for home (severe sleep deprivation may play a role too).
Sunday evening: brainwave and evadyne stop by for a little while, and are invited to return Monday night for a post-meet meet (hopefully with Wuukiee, mcc, and PMDboi) to assist in destroying the leftover booze, as well as the Death by Chocolate cake which didn't get frosted until after the diner trip, and is yet untouched. Our heroes go to bed and declare this shindig over.

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