Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Travelin' Togs

At this very moment (as I type, not as you read) I'm anticipating the opening of registration for the American Library Association Annual Conference. This summer it will be held in Anaheim, CA, just a quick walk away from Disneyland. I have only been to Disneyland once, for a single day visit on my honeymoon (the trip was a Southern California road trip culminating in our first experience at the San Diego Comic-Con). The registration process has always been exciting for me. As many of you (should) know, I am a travel planning fool. Just read my novel Don't Stop Now to get a taste of the kind of road trip I can plan. Even when it's not a road trip, I still love to research the crap out of a vacation, even a vacation as basic as a conference plus a jaunt to a theme park. The way conference registration works is this: A few weeks before actual registration (usual at the first business day of the new year), ALA posts a map of the hotels and a price list. This is where my research begins. It used to be based on whichever hotel was the fanciest (you see, when there wasn't a kid in my picture, I was a sucker for the expensive hotel at a low low price!). Now, I am all about convenience. With the world of Disney, I am always down for one of their hotels. I know I can get better deals at a nearby place, but this is our vacation and I want to do it up right. Don't judge. I know there are some cynical hipsters out there who love to shun the ol' Diz Machine, but I am certainly not one of them. Even when my family was at its most messed-up, we always came together on a Disney vacation.

22 minutes until registration.

Last year ALA really freaked me out; they didn't list the hotels before registration day! How was I supposed to know which hotels I needed to read reviews on, find out if they have bedbugs, where the quietest, cleanest, most centrally located place was?! It was torture. This year, thank Mickey, they listed the hotels. My original plan was straight-up Disney hotel, but then I found that since all of the hotels were in close range, why not choose one with free breakfast? After a significant amount of research (cross-referencing and what have you), I am back to Disney. I like the early access hours to the theme parks, the monorail into the park, the Grade A pool areas, and apparently they have fiber optic lighting on their beds!

I love the anticipation of a trip. Right now my hands can't seem to get warm. The thought of a sunny California day, meeting authors and illustrators in the morning and hanging out with Chip and Dale at night, warms me up. Well, most of me. I think I'd need Goofy to sit on my hands to warm these babies up.

Almost time to register! Librarians, start your engines!

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