Wish I was there: ANGOULEME COMICS FESTIVAL 2009
... But short of that, I'm following Bart Beaty on the Comics Reporter, with his moment by moment recounting...
... which started out with the 25 things he plans to do while in Angoulême—item number 3:
3. Attend a lecture. American cons have panels, Angouleme has "meetings." This year's schedule is one of the richest in many years, with numerous opportunities to listen to the world's best cartooning talents. Here's what you're missing by not being here. Friday has talks by Milo Manara, Hiroshi Hirata, and Vittorio Giardino. Saturday features Posy Simmonds (expect to see me there for sure), Adrian Tomine, Dan Clowes, James Kochalka, Melinda Gebbie and Jose Villarubia, and South Africans Conrad Botes, Joe Daly, Joe Dog and Karlien de Villiers. Sunday "only" has Marjane Satrapi and Chris Ware and David Heatley. I defy you to find a better line-up of cartoonists talking anywhere.
It really is a phenomenal festival, as more and more Americans have come to realize.