We made it in to Boston around 1:30, missing the huge hotel check-in lines that were reported later. I went to the 2:00 pm orientation seminar, and left after a little bit, as it was pitched to people who'd neither been to a con before nor read any of the pre-Worldcon advice online.
I headed for the dealer's room, where I was immediately smitten by wood puzzles by Judy Peterson (alas, no web site; you can get an idea of some of the simpler ones from this book cover). I made the mistake of leaving a truly amazing phoenix (done in very pale wood) rising from flames (red wood, of course) until I could talk to Chad about it; it was gone not two hours later. Later I bought a one-piece standing dragon made from a gorgeous African wood called bubinga; I put it on the hotel TV so I could admire it, and on Sunday evening found that the maid had broken it while dusting. Grr. The hotel says it will pay for a replacement, however, and in the meantime I will try to repair the broken one with a very small amount of Elmer's glue, as Ms. Peterson recommended.
I've already reported on the 4:00 pm panel on exposition. At 7:00 pm, I went to "Ask Dr. Mike." This was great fun, though there were a lot of references to The Day the Earth Stood Still, which I haven't seen (Chad kindly explained the plot to me on the drive home). I asked a much less lofty question, "do the bug vacuums really work, or what's the best way to kill the nasty creatures I find in my bathtub some mornings?" The answer: armored minions with flamethrowers, though that does create other problems, like the need for an asbestos shower curtain . . .
Before "Ask Dr. Mike," I'd helped marykaykare a bit with party setup, but when we got back, we found that dlacey had done so much from 7-8 that there was really nothing left. ("Charles Dodgson" helped with decoration, and put up the "LL YR VWLS R BLNG T S" on the wall (picture).) MKK had a 9:00 pm panel to go to and left me in semi-charge for some reason, which I frankly found a little unnerving. (There was one really creepy person I couldn't seem to keep out, but at least that person didn't stay long.) The party was later written up in the newsletter, and I was unfairly mentioned—let the record reflect that dlacey was the one doing a heroic job of restocking the food, while I did door duty.
Other than feeling like I didn't know what I was doing on the door, though, it was a lovely party. I saw papersky, pnh, tnh, ckd, cheshyre, rivka, tammylc and child, xopher_vh, thomasyan, lilairen, annafdd, fluffcthulhu (accompanied by feorag and autopope), hazelchaz (if you're reading this: I was wrong, the term I meant was "glom," not "glomp"), seawasp, dhole (those last two I'm not sure was then, actually), Cory Doctorow (who came bounding in saying "I found a place with steaks *this* *big*," and both Chad and PNH thought he said "snakes"), and about a gazillion other people whose names currently escape me.
Person who said she'd found the very worst Mary Sue ever, if you're out there, care to take credit? (It was formerly on ff.net, about a 14-year-old girl who was in a concentration camp and had Dr. Mengele fall in love with her. Yeah.)
We quit the party a bit before midnight, I think. I completely forgot about the Tenn reading, and did not make it down to First Night, but felt pretty good about the way the con had started all the same.
ETA: other Thursday reports: