All three are only a two to three hour drive from here, and when you consider that my normal commute is a 1.5 to 2 hour drive, you know that the distance was no impediment.
The biggest reason to choose not to go is money. Now that Mike is working, and I'm still bringing in my part-time work, we are oh-so-slowly catching up on the Pit of Despair of bills and debt that we dug over the last four years. But there's still a long way to go, and it will be an even longer way if I let myself fall into earlier habits of mild expenditures just because it would be fun. I need to be content for now with reliable groceries.
The other de-motivating factor is stuff - piles of toys and office supplies and books to be sold and papers to file and shipping materials and projects in progress and projects barely launched. None of that moves forward if I don't push at it. All of it needs to move forward. And a lot of the projects are pretty cool. I'd like to be able to show them to people, but that takes actually doing them.
So, not gonna go. But writing about them here will at least remind me of what I was thinking about, and make it that much easier to make the call next time opportunities arise.
The one I considered most often through these last few months, although I never talked to anyone about it, is JayCon. I've known Jay Lake casually for years - enough that we would both recognize each other in a convention hallway (and have). But we haven't really spent any time together, and this looked like a good opportunity to fix that, as well as meet more of the Portland area folks.
Another possibility was jaunting up to Port Townsend for The Brass Screw, a weekend-long steampunk get-together that sounds fabulous.
The most tenuous of options is a gathering called All's Faire, which I know almost nothing about except that one poster on the steamrats mailing list asked for help with their Tea party and I thought "that sounds like fun!".
Instead of any of those intriguing options, I'm going to list some more books for sale at eBay, sort, distribute and otherwise eliminate some of these boxes, put at least two hours into doing a new art piece, and really think about maybe perhaps sometime trying to use WordPress (since it's all set up but I haven't a clue what to do next and I have a million ideas for websites).
Oh, and I'm going to write this long LJ post. Because I really ought to do this more often.