Yesterday I took the train to London. I swapped my normal attire of sweats or jeans for something more presentable and went for lunch with friends. The internet is an amazing thing. I first met Biddy, Julie Cohen, Fiona Harper, Anna Louise Lucia, Carol and Donna Alward on line. Some of us met via eharlequin where the Britpack hang out in a virtual pub called the mouse and pen. We then met in real time at RNA conferences and the summer party.
Donna is Canadian and although we've chatted in various forums, swapped emails, celebrated and commiserated with the highs and lows of publishing life, until yesterday we hadn't met.
Biddy, who is a superb organiser, had booked us into a lovely Turkish restaurant where we all probably ate too much judging by our sleepy faces when we finally rolled out of there.
We had a wonderful afternoon and the time went far too quickly. Donna is even lovelier in real life than on line if that's possible, we all played with and were entertained by Julie's gorgeous baby boy who'd joined us for lunch. The funny part - and I know some of you will find this hard to believe - but not a drop of alcohol was consumed by any of us. We all stuck to water and turkish lemonade.
(I suspect the M&B writers amongst us may have consumed their quota the day before at the annual M&B bash)
It was a lovely and memorable day, for the good company, excellent food and Reggie Perrin chairs which made embarressing noises whenever anyone moved. I suspect some of the pictures may make it onto people's blogs.