I am so *glad* I ended up staying overnight with sulla_! I hope she also felt that she had found a kindred spirit. We looked at pictures she had taken, caught up with her flist and subsequent news, talked about Elijah. Her apartment is full of Frodo! Everywhere! I would be in the middle of saying something and be arrested by seeing another neat thing.
I slept well on her futon, but would have slept better if I had remembered my own pillow. We were up around six, me with my bag full of what I expected to eat during the day and the little umbrella-folding chair I had found on Saturday at a Salvation Army store for a buck. We got to the Ryerson Theatre around 7:30 am and they hadn't even begun to set up yet, so we just parked ourselves on our tiny chairs outside the gate.
Pretty soon a lovely middle aged woman with a black shirt and long curly black hair came to ask who we were, and told us where we should be, and then she set up the fences and ropes. The video cameras were across the carpet from us, and there was a walkway roped out directly in front of us for newspeople to walk through. The crowd never got big enough that people gathered across the street.
I spent a lot of the day practicing drawing pictures of Elijah, hoping I would have one good enough for him to sign by 9:00. I really thought I would be able to do that. I was wrong. I did come up with a couple where it was obvious who it was, but they weren't *good*.
We had fun talking and getting to know each other, we bought magazines and fuel and Sulla scoped out a close ladies room, so we settled in comfortably. An LJ friend of hers who is a LotR fan, though not specifically of Elijah, came through frequently taking breaks from her nearby job. I'm going to call her Pat, since I don't know her LJ name and am unsure whether I should use her real name. lillith also started coming by, and settled in around 3:00. Probably around 2:00, I came back from the ladies room to find a reporter interviewing Sulla. She was interested in everything we had to say, and wrote most of it down verbatim, saying that we would be in the paper Tuesday, but we weren't.
A couple of movies went by without crowds, press or stars, and before noon we were the only ones there. Sulla really regretted not sleeping in longer, since she was exhausted, but knew that she would not have slept well for worrying about being too late. We think that Madonna and (husband? I've forgotten the name. It'll be on her report) went by without note, since she got a glimpse of their backs as she returned from the washroom. I was right there, but drawing, and hadn't looked up. After noon, people did start congregating for Trust the Man, with David Ducovny. They waited a long time, because he and the rest of the stars from the show (Julianna Moore, Jake Gyllenhal, Claire Dunn, Billy somebody - I don't know how to spell any of the names) were quite late for their 6:00 movie. It couldn't have started before 6:30 or 7:00. I got Julianna's and Claire's autographs, just because they were there, but none of them were doing very much signing. I did get DD for Sulla, and I think for the desperate girls behind me, if I remember right.
We decided that we were in exactly the wrong place. The stars went first to the beginning of the fence, then over to the cameras, then back to the fence, skipping us completely. We thought we would move one way or the other when things cleared out, but they never did. The whole fence front line was claimed from then on. So we hung out - seven of us by then, kicking ourselves in various ways for mistakes made. There was only about an hour left in which to sit, before it became prudent to fold up the chairs, pack up the bags, have sharpies and signables ready, and position at the fence.