It's midnight and I'm blogging from the bathroom, because someone is sleeping in my bed.
Don't get too excited, it's the same person that always sleeps in my bed. But after slipping in late from my first taste of 221B Con, I had to start blogging for you guys and didn't want to wake the sleeper.
This is something special. This is a Sherlock Holmes convention with an expected seven hundred attendees (and that being just the cut-off point) tomorrow, the like of which this country has never seen.
The hotel has been taken over by fans of Sherlock Holmes, wearing costumes, decorating their hotel room doors, showing their love of our favorite detective in every way imaginable.
And the Con itself hasn't even started.
Tonight, in the hotel's large atrium, here was the scene: A little band of six of us, middle-aged and older, four men and two women, sitting in a circle talking, surrounded by great numbers of other circles of energized, cute-as-a-bug, under-age-thirty young ladies who sounded a lot like it would if you played about a hundred different Baker Street Babes podcasts simultaneously. This is definitely not your father's Sherlock Holmes event.
For years, aging Sherlockians have wished for young people coming into the hobby, and I think that wish has been granted. Their major point of entry might be BBC Sherlock, which some of the self-proclaimed devotee class might pooh-pooh, but they're here and they're our kind of people, smart, funny, and enthusiastic. Seeds of future Sherlockian thought will be planted this weekend, without a doubt. (I was already discussing a potential Baker Street Journal article with a scholar whose submission the editor is sure to love.)
I can hear fans of Sherlock Holmes in the hallways even now, laughing and happily talking into the night. (This is not going to be a hotel for sleeping, but sometimes sacrifices have to be made.) Earlier in the evening you could hear them out in the parking lot from our fourth floor room. And what you hear is excitement. Energy. The spirit of real fans, a whole lot of whom traveled a very long way to get here. (Even as far as Australia.)
I really hope you're not missing this. But I can understand if you didn't see it coming. I don't think any of us, even the con's organizers fully foresaw that the moment for an actual Sherlock Holmes convention was here, and could pull such numbers. But it is, and it has.
"More to come," the tired but happy fellow wrote.