I am EXHAUSTED! I did so much walking yesterday, and I did not get home until 4am (though that was due to going to a movie). So, the Mega Meet!
The L ride downtown was pretty uneventful and I arrived at the Conservatory a little before 12:30pm (the official meet time). At that point everyone that had arrived was inside, and there was no one I knew, so I was very much standing alone, feeling awkward. We were not going to remain inside because there is no food allowed inside of the Conservatory, but the event planner had been told about a nearby gazebo that we were going to walk to (it rained yesterday, so we needed shelter for our picnic). After a little bit inside, we walked outside where the rain had temporarily subsided. By this point, more girls had arrived and were standing outside, including the girls from Milwaukee that I had met at the Tea Party at ACen. We started talking, and I started to relax a bit more.
We all started to walk towards the gazebo, although we got a little lost, waited for a little while, turned around, and eventually found the gazebo. Before finding the gazebo I was talking with a few other girls I did not know. One girl was completely new and had yet to dress Lolita. I did not catch her name, but she took a picture of just me. I need to track her down for that picture. Another of the girls I had talked to online because we had the same skirt, and the other girl thought she had beat me out of a skirt but after an amusing story, it was not me. F
Once we reached the gazebo, they did the Bento Box contest. I did not go over to look because I figured I would see the pictures later and they did it very quickly, but the winner was one of the Milwaukee girls so I saw hers up close afterwards. After a little more awkward feelings on my part, we all sat down. I ended up eating with the Milwaukee girls, and eventually another girl sat down that I chatted with. After eating, we did our group picture, as well as a picture broken down by Lolita style.
After pictures, we did the raffle, and I actually won something! There were sixteen prizes, I won about a quarter of the way through.
The two small items (a mini cake and a flower ring) were actually from little gift bags that the planner gave us. Everything else was from the raffle. The brown rosette (from mossbadger.com)should be easy for me to use, the white flower should not be too difficult either since white is almost always involved in any outfit. The other three wearable items all have pink, so I am worried about weather I will be able to use them or not. The planet is very cute, so I may just use it as decor. I really like the big pink bow (from Little Bits of E) as well (it has a pretty cameo in the center), I am hoping I can work it into something Classic. The red bows are my biggest concern, but you never know, I could end up finding something it matches perfectly. There is also a little postcard sized Lolita drawing. It is cute, I am not in love with the face, but it will definitely join my small group of Lolita art that will eventually be hung up when I have a place. The non-Milwaukee girl that I was eating with ended up winning the top raffle prize. All prizes considered, I am very happy with what I won, there were only two things I really coveted, a chocolate mirror and an alpaca ring, but I may be able to find those on my own.
After the raffle, things pretty much died down. A lot of girls had to catch trains, so they had to leave. I started feeling a little awkward again, and since everything was wrapping up much earlier than I expected, I called the cupcake place I was going to get my dad a fathers day gift from to have my order ready early. Of course when I went to say goodbye, I ended up hanging around a little longer and talking with more girls…and throwing food at seagulls….
Eventually I left and headed towards the red line train to go pick up my cupcakes. As I was walking, suddenly I looked up to see one of the girls that was at the Meet Up running back to me and waving. She and her friends had just driven past and seen me and she jumped out of the car to ask if I was interested in attending a party they were having later that night. Unfortunately I had to decline because I had plans to go watch Man of Steel with a friend, but I was really touched that she made such an effort to make sure I had been invited. She walked the rest of the way to the train station with me (the others had parked there and were waiting for her), and I said goodbye and waved to the others and told them to have fun. I really wish I could have gone to the party, it would have given me more time to get to know them all. Oh well, next time.
From there, I got my cupcakes and headed back to my car. My arms were hurting so badly from the eight of the picnic basket. I am absolutely sore today, but it was all worth it and I really enjoyed my first official Meet Up with the Chicago Lolitas. A few of the girls complimented my dress, so I felt better, though I could not get over the stain…grrr! As far as random people on the street commenting, I only had three comments.
Best Comment: A older black gentleman who worked at the CTA Blue Line station looked at me, laughed and said “I like it.” I briefly told him I had been at a Meet Up, and that now I was going to go change into jeans and a Superman T-Shirt and watch the new movie. He said he wished he could go with me.
Stupidest Comment: A yuppy looking guy with a small group of friends right by Rush St. asked “Are you Snow White?” I was already checking something on my phone, so I barely registered the comment, but I just ignored him.
Other Comment: A teenage girl with her friends were entering the Cumberland station as I was heading to my car and stopped to say “I LOVE your dress!” I thought it was really sweet.
I cannot wait until my next Lolita event!