Saturday, 16 October 2010

Top of the Mark

partly cloudy, windy, cool - temps 50s

Wow, temperature really changing...not really all that cool, but unexpected, so we didn't wear sweaters outside, then shivered all over.

Took the cable car yesterday afternoon- have I told you all this??? Can't remember - so much happening. If I have, please just consider me the mad aunt in the attic - escaped into the blogosphere. Loved the cablecars...stopped and hopped off at the Mark Hopkins hotel and begged our way into a room starting tonight - Saturday and running until Thursdya when we leave. We paid for a deluxe room and when we checked in today we discovered they'd given us a one bedroom corner suite.

Talk about a soft landing. The longer we stayed at the Hyatt Regency the more we were put off. Though for no particular reason. Everyone was very nice - and the location was great...certainly the view from the club lounge was exceptional. But it just felt so cold. Now, I've become a huge fan of modern design....but not the cold kind. I realize it's possible to be 'cool' without being cold. Some hotel design is spectacular. Modern, clean, functional, beautiful- thrilling. I can literally tremble I'm so excited by some of the design.

But others are just plain cold... and not particularly well thought out. some of you, quite sensibly, suggested we call down and ask for a bedside lamp - but the problem was the table they put on my side was just large enough for the phone they put there. I couldn't even get my book on it without putting both at an angle.

Now, the room would have been wonderful, for one person.

But I must tell you, at the Mark Hopkins the room (upgraded partly because we're InterContinental Ambassador Gold level - the perks of lots of travel) is amazing. A little like walking back in time...more classic than modern - but beautifully done. And not dreary or tired, as so many of the these older hotels are. We're thrilled and relieved. And excited to be here. And very grateful for the upgrade well beyond what we might ever expect. And so wonderful to have the extra room - given we're here for 5 nights.

Having a fabulous time at Bouchercon. Had drinks last night with a group of women Marjorie organized....Michael picked up the tab - lovely man. And thank you, Marjorie, for the wonderful licorice pipe bookmarks - and organizing this. Most are members of the Laurie R. King book club - Laurie is also the guest of honor at this convention. There's a photo at the top of Michael and me with some of the people.

Then at 8:30 this morning I joined Rhys Bowen and Deborah Crombie for the Goddess Panel - a sort of reprise of a panel we first did at Bouchercon in Baltimore. No moderator, just the three of us chatting. It helps that I am a huge fan of both these writers...and both these women. I genuinely like them - a lot. Indeed, Deborah and I are hoping to get together in a few weeks in London.

We had a blast on the panel...and thanks to all of you who showed up early to hear us. The place was packed.

There's a photo as well of the three of us after the panel.

Then I had breakfast with my friend Dan Mayer, of Barnes and Noble. Then Michael and I decamped to the new hotel. Phew. Having afternoon tea in the lounge and listening to the clanging of the cable cars. Magical.

Quiet evening - then the Anthony Awards brunch tomorrow. THE BRUTAL TELLING is up for Best Novel. I have not prepared a 'thank you' speech. And, honestly, to be nominated really is enough. I'd really love to win - but to be recognized for the nomination really is fabulous. last year I lost the Barry Award to Deborah Crombie - and I was thrilled to applaud!! She so deserved that win.

Hope you're well - will blog tomorrow and tell you how it goes. But how bad can life be when we're together in a suite in the Mark Hopkins in San Francisco?


Dana said...

Thanks so much for taking us along on this thrilling adventure. And best of luck re the Anthony Award. No matter, all your books are "bests" for me.
Most of all - congratulations on finding just the perfect hotel for yourself and Michael. Now that was inspirational!

Anne Church said...

Oh, I am so glad you and Michael have found the right place to stay! Your schedule is so exciting but hectic; nighttime comfort & bedtime reading are a MUST! I am holding my breath on this morning's outcome, but your books have already won in every way! I was truly amazed at the unthoughtful,cold room plan at the Hyatt!I thought of The ancient Auberge du Tresor in Quebec city,a walk up, small rooms, even smaller beds, BUT bedside reading lights,warm colors,lovely helpful staff and great view of the Frontenac! Hope to see you in Quebec on the 28th!

Carolann said...

Congrats on winning the Anthony Award. Life in San Francisco is great as I'm sure you're experiencing.

S. Fain said...

Dear Louise Penny, Your blog is rich in the details just like your books. I just finished reading "Bury Your Dead" and I sat with head in hands realizing what a wonderful, sensitive, penetrating storyteller you are. I adore Chief Inspector. I am hoping that there are many of his type sprinkled throughout humanity who will bring the quality of life up to his level.
I also thank you for bringing Olivier back to Three Pines. I grieved for Old Mundin,the irony of his fateful decision, and the terrible loss to the family. But it is good to see the greedy, ol' money changer back in his groove. Surely he learned something about himself while in prison.
Lastly, I still wonder where Champlain's mummy is now!
Sandra Fain, devoted fan