I woke up early, and drove up to Julia's house. I got the train into Sheffield from there (the post before last was made from her local station) and popped up into town to have a look around and grab a leaflet or two from the information centre, and then back down to the station to await the punters.
First to arrive, and the only people besides myself to be there before the appointed hour of 1pm, were Brian and Ann from Chester. A few moments after the gun, lushattic appeared, followed by Martin and Alison from Sheffield, Tim who used to be in ZZ9 and recently rejoined, and adelheid. Jamie, a refugee from the Internet Treehouse and himself a local (although he moves to London imminently) joined us later.
We navigated cautiously through the roadworks to the WinterGardens at the top of the hill (yes it's true, Sheffield does have a pocket Australian Rain Forest in the city centre) and then to the adjoining cutlery museum. After all this science and history, the lure of the pub proved too much and we descended to the second-best pub in Sheffield, which I believe had a cat in its name. Someone will refresh my memory in comments, I'm sure. The food was excellent, once we managed to secure a couple of those rare tables.
After some slouchers withdrew to go home, we caught a tram to Meadowhall, perhaps the largest mall in Europe, where we furthered our Christmas shopping. And finally Mr Attic and I retired back to Julia's house to watch a DVD and assault her vodka collection.
(brief aside, a conversation at Novacon:
Me: "Sheffield Slouch?"
Julia: "Oh, would you like to crash at my house afterwards, have a party, something like that?"
Me: "That would be great, thank you."
Julia: "I'll post you a key. I'll be away."
Julia from Sheffield. She's great.)
And then this morning, after a lie in, a drive home. Not a bad weekend at all.