I’ve always wondered what being on the other end of the coin is like; you know, actually sitting and enjoying a GeekOut Meetup, rather than running one. In the whole time that GeekOut Shrewsbury has been a thing, I’ve never been able to go up myself. It being on a Thursday means that I’d have to effectively take a day off and do over five hours of travel, or take two days off and do two lots of driving and have a place to stay. I also didn’t want it to be obvious, so managing to keep it secret for so long felt oh so good.
This past weekend, Jake and I travelled from Bristol to Shrewsbury in a nearly three hour long journey. Okay, actually it took us a little bit longer than three hours, as we decided to take a scenic route, but that’s by the by. We got to our hotel a bit after 2:30pm, got our stuff in there and off we went to go and find the famous Montgomery’s Tower. We managed to find a hotel that was so close, it was frankly the best thing we could have done. We didn’t pay much for the room either; it wasn’t much more than fifty quid! A bargain for two of us, so if you’re thinking of doing this for yourself, book early and get to the Premier Inn on Smithfield Road. Honestly, check out the distance!
So, anyone who read Joel’s GeekOut Shrewsbury Meet gallery yesterday, or even just looked at it – You would have noticed that I was there. Indeed, this was something that Jake and I had planned back in July, so for us to finally be able to go up and see everyone at the Shrewsbury Meet was amazing. Thanks to everyone who made us feel welcome and thanks for the games everyone, I hope the winner of the Quidditch set was very happy indeed. It was great being able to see what the Shrewsbury folk get up to. I spend most of my day playing Magic: the Gathering, but I also did get a game of Cash ‘n Guns in, which seemed to go down well!
It was interesting being on the guest side, rather than being an organiser. Joel was completely shocked by us turning up, which was great! He did immediately announce to everyone there that I was his boss, which honestly is something that makes me laugh every time. I may indeed be the one he reports to regarding articles, as well as figuring out how turnout and the likes went for each of his events, but I barely think of myself as a boss. Yet, Joel seems to, so therefore I had to give him a reasonable job inspection – and here’s what I had to say of his GeekOut Shrewsbury event, for his first ever evaluation.
It’s clear that Joel’s cultivated an awesome community, a creative bunch of geeks who gather to game and socialise. I heard a few people say they hadn’t seen one another since a previous meetup, so it’s nice to see that our events are doing their intended effect, both here in Bristol and up in Shrewsbury. It’s awesome to see how far this event’s come in a short space of time, with a really good head count to boot. There’s a very reasonable selection of games, as well as Joel being a very attentive host.
All in all, I had a great time meeting so many people. It was a pleasure finally meeting Murray, after years of knowing one another. It was also brilliant to be able to catch up with our good con buddies, Sarah and Alan. I’m glad that GeekOut Shrewsbury is in good hands and honestly, I didn’t expect anything less. Joel may not be getting a pay rise, as uh, that’d imply we both get paid, but in all honesty, it was amazing to see what someone was doing with GeekOut. Jake and I will be going back to Shrewsbury for future meets, though the travel, the amount of time off required and the expense of having a hotel means we can’t be there regularly. We hope to see you guys again in the new year!