This past December, I got to experience (arguably) one of the most rewarding parts of working with Level Up Dice: I got to go to an Overseas Convention. Little kangaroo-riding, emu-chasing Australian me got to head all the way across the globe to attend and work at PAX Unplugged.
I must mention at some point that I’m a newly married, absolute homebody who fears flying. Everything about going halfway across the world was terrifying to me, but now that I’m on the other side, I can say that it was one of the most rewarding times of my career.
The band of people that come together to make a LUD convention happening can only be described as family. Everyone plays a part, and everyone is so ridiculously supportive in so many ways. Any time I felt homesick or anxious at all, there were people at my side to support me and turn my frown upside down. Every single day, I felt less and less sad about being away from home, I could literally feel the sulkiness lessen every morning.
I got to meet all sorts of gamers from all walks of life, all with common interests: pretty dice (or as many would call them, “shiny click clacks”). I was able to share with others my enthusiasm for the iridescent Ionized dice sets, or the forest-scented wood dice sets. I helped so many Pippenwyck orphans (both boxes and bags) find new homes where they can happily carry dice for their owners. All weekend long, I got to introduce beautiful dice to people, and I got to play with them myself too. One of the highlights was being part of the Cog Quest, all to benefit the work of Game to Grow.
Just in that one week, in under 96 hours, I’ve made lifelong friends that I know I can depend on. I know that I can share highs or lows with these people, and I am so grateful for that. I got to experience American staples such as IHOP and Five Guys, and experience quintessential Philadelphian must-sees such as the Liberty Bell. For someone who’s currently in the deep hot summer of Australia, 2°C (35.6°F) was a very welcome change of pace.
After a lot of plane travel (30+ hours), a lot of waiting around (15+ hours), and 1 missed connecting flight (oops), I’m still a homebody who would prefer not to travel. However, my experience at PAX Unplugged made everything worth it. Although there were some 1s, I definitely came home with an overall natural 20 in EXP.
This article was brought to you by Rachel J