It's been an insane few days for me, but I did it!!!
I'm usually the type of player who likes to take his time in doing anything in the game...but every so often I will be taken over by something (usually a reputation grind) and dedicate every living hour to getting what I want. Usually it means I become a miserable, selfish git - sorry guildies! Last Thursday I found myself fishing in Ironforge in the afternoon and noticed I was well into my 400's. Maybe I had a chance to get the realm first Fishing Grand Master. I frantically fished those last 30 or 40 skills and was disappointed when I didn't get the achievement. Not because I didn't get it, but because I was looking forward to leveling fishing in Dalaran's fountain, and just wasted it for no reason. I felt it served me right for breaking my own rules about taking my time.
I didn't learn my lesson though. I was in Dalaran only a day after release, thanks to a mage who took me there for 20g. The first thing I did was the cooking daily quest, because I was after the "Chef" title. 15 minutes later the daily quests reset and I was able to do it again. I was one of only a handful of people in Dalaran by this point, and it got me thinking that maybe I had a chance of actually getting the realm first; to get the recipes you must get Dalaran Cooking Awards by completing the daily quests. By being one of the first people in Dalaran I had a big advantage. My main competition would be a mage who had got there before me, or someone who had got more Awards than me by lucky drops.
I made some terrible mistakes though. Firstly, I bought the wrong recipe to get me to 425; instead of buying one that needs the commonly dropped Chilled Meat, I had bought the one that needs Chunk O' Mammoth. This meant a huge amount of grinding. Secondly, for some odd reason I though Northern Spices were soulbound, so I wasted a huge amount of time when I could have bought them off other people. Surely someone with level 70 alts or deeper wallets would beat me easily. After I realised this second mistake I was sure I'd blown it. I felt really frustrated because I had spent over 2000g (which you'll remember I had spent the last few weeks grinding before the release of Wrath) for no reason. Also a number of people had really helped me out in my attempt and I felt like an idiot because I'd failed due to a rookie mistake. Skill point 424 was particularly painful, it took me over 300 meals to get the skill up and well over 1000g.
But my guild got me re-motivated after my downer, and I decided I would max out my cooking just to keep me satisfied the effort was for something. So I continued the endless grinding of innocent Mammoth Cubs in Borean Tundra, and the frustrating fishing of Deep Sea Monsterbelly in the Frozen Sea. I was half way through level 70 when I started killing the Mammoths and now I'm halfway through 71. One whole level seeing the same mobs, and to mix it up endlessly fishing in the same spot.
Skill 449 was getting as frustrating as 424 had. I completed the new daily quest a few minutes after it was given and decided to cook with the few northern spices I had won that day. I was changing the song on iTunes when suddenly the yellow achievement sign popped up. Then I see a "WTF" from my only guildie online (who didn't know about my attempt because he had just returned to the game after a fortnight away), followed by about 30 whispers of "Gz". It took me a few seconds to realise I had done it! I can't tell you how great it felt after having spent countless hours grinding, thousands of gold and finally giving up.
There are some people who I was to say a big thank you to for helping me out over the last few days. Everyone in my guild Looney Tunes, especially Winks and Mal, & also Dolbz and Sidi. People from my old guild The Village People, especially Josh, Tippy, Bakku and Gem. Finally my old guild master and friend Keyhunter. I got a lot of moral support, as well as materials they could have used for their own cooking. Thanks guys, couldn't have done it without you!
Here are some pictures
I'm in a great mood now, but I think I need a few days off to recover!