I traveled to America for the first time in 2012. My goal was to visit Nerd Mecca, San Diego Comic-Con International.
I had somehow been able to snag some tickets, and I was really exited to finally see Comic-Con with my own eyes.
Tickets for Comic-Con are so coveted that they can run out in a matter of minutes. So getting just a single ticket felt like a big win.
My journey to America was long, but fairly uneventful.
I flew from Norway to Amsterdam, from Amsterdam to Denver, and then finally from Denver to San Diego.
This was a few years after my solo interrail trip across Europe, so traveling alone to America did not feel like a big issue.
I had booked a room at a hotel a little ways out of town. All the hotels in downtown San Diego were already filled up with other convention-goers.
After getting situated in the hotel, I headed out to see one of the only other staples of San Diego I knew about at the time.
The next day the fun really began.
The hotel, well aware of all the geeks living there, had hired shuttle buses to go back-and-forth between the hotel and the San Diego Convention Center.
So after a short bus trip, I had arrived!
The entire city felt like it was packed with nerds, geeks, celebrities and cosplayers.
You could barely step forward without tripping over Super Mario and The Winchester Brothers having lunch together. Or Joss Whedon palling around with the cast of Dexter or something. You get the drift.
I spent a good deal of my time there going to panels, on various subjects that interested me.
Some were filled up, but there was always something with enough room for me to attend.
The hardest panels to attend were the ones held in the giant Hall H. This was the hall used by all the most popular franchises. It would therefore fill up very quickly despite its size.
The first day I tried to enter Hall H, the line zigzagged over the road and all the way down to the harbor. After spending too much time in that line, I gave up, and went to do something else.
The panel I was most exited to see at Comic-Con was Doctor Who, and it was going to be held in Hall H.
So the evening before that panel was to be held the next morning, I joined other Doctor Who fans who were camping out in a line on the lawn.
It was a hard night to get through, and I barely slept, but it was so worth it.
The first panel in Hall H that day was for another show I really like, Supernatural. The producers and actors were all really fun to listen to, which you too can do in this video.
Finally it was time for Doctor Who’s panel, and that one was even better!
You may be wondering what the point of sleeping in line outside the convention hall was, when I could watch the whole panel on YouTube later anyway.
All I can say is that being in the room was incredible.
At one point during the weekend, I went down to the lawn between the harbor and the convention center.
There were a few live recordings of geeky radio shows, and other things like that. But the most interesting thing going there that day was a collection of different live-action renditions of the Batmobile.
Not only the convention center that had been overtaken by nerds for Comic-Con weekend, but rather the whole of San Diego.
So one evening I attended a three hour variety stage show called, filled with geek icons and music. Paul and Storm, Adam Savage, and Wil Wheaton hosted the event.
Another afternoon, I took part in an alternate reality zombie experience held at the Petco Park baseball stadium, called The Walking Dead Escape.
The experience entailed running up and down the stadium rafters, all while actors in zombie makeup were chasing us around.
It was very fun, and exhausting.
It is now seven years later, so concrete memories from San Diego Comic-Con 2012 have started melting together into a vague memory molasses. So I had some difficulty to be specific when I wrote this.
But I hope that I was able to give a somewhat coherent account of my experiences there.
And I think that you should absolutely attend if you ever have the opportunity. You are bound to find something of interest to you there.
If you liked this article, then sign up for my monthly newsletter!
At the end of each month, I’ll send you an email with my best articles from that month.