Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The night I met The Pioneer Woman

This is Melissa in front of Powell's bookstore. You know, the Powell's that's an hour and fifteen minute drive from my house? The one that was 30 minutes away from the Powell's that The Pioneer Woman was actually signing books at. If you don't get lost that is...

This is the super scary parking garage that we parked in. It had one lane ramps for two lanes of traffic hence the HONK HORN sign.  (As you can tell, the Hummer won the chicken fight over my Ford Freestyle).

This picture doesn't do it justice, but the ramp was straight down hill. Like, scary, creepy, I am going to flip my car down hill. After we left the parking garage, got a little lost and turned around, got directions, got lost again and got more directions, my heart started to return to a normal beating pace.

Because of our, um, short-cut, I was fearful we weren't going to make it in time to see her. And I promised my faithful blog readers a picture. Eventually we made it to the right Powell's Books. Whew!

I thought I was The Pioneer Woman's biggest fan. Apparently I'm in good company. Me and 600 other people who showed up!

The difference between all of these other people and Melissa and I? Apparently, they are better informed. They know trivial things like: What location the book signing will be at. 

They also know that her book signings are wildly popular and that hundreds of people show up freakishly early to things like this. Whoops! Knowing information like this doesn't bode well with the iner procrastinator in me. 

When we first got there around 8 o'clock we were told that they had previously handed out tickets--360 of them! Anyone who didn't have a ticket would have to wait for a free-for-all at the end of the night. Since it was 8 o'clock and they were only on number 150, my heart started to sink. We'd come so far to not end up with a blog worthy picture.

But, when opportunity knocks... you take it.

She had to pee. Her table was empty. It looked so lonely. I wasn't sure if I'd get a picture with her, so I did what any good little pastor's wife would do...

I stood up in front of hundereds of people and I took the opportunity to sneak behind the table and sit in the chair that Ree Drummond had been sitting in for the last 3 hours so Melissa could snap my picture. Hey folks, sometimes you have be a little rebellious!

Melissa wasn't as inclined to be rebellious at first, but my bad example wore off on her and she did it too!

Isn't she just beautiful? And funny as all get out too!

After strategically working our way from one set of chairs to another, we ended up in the front row, like 5 feet from PW. Seriously, we kept making friends with the people in front of us, asking them if we could have their seats when their numbers were called. Sometimes I embarrass myself! It paid off, because we spent the last several hours of the book signing watching her and listening to all of the conversations. This was especially exciting because we still didn't know if we'd end up getting our picture taken with her.

And, because I promised you a picture, we strategically lined ourselves up in such a way as to "get our pictures taken with her"... just in case. I'm a woman of my word!

This was the room sometime after 10 o'clock. They had locked us in because the mall was closing. Normal people were at home, asleep. All of us wack-jobs were clinging to our cookbooks hoping to get them signed. And a picture... I wanted a picture with her!

Was that too much to ask?

As we were waiting I snapped a picture of her cute boots. They were the subject of a recent blog post, I couldn't resist!

Finally, at about 10:45 (1 hour 45 minutes after the book signing 'ended' and 45 minutes after the store closed), the last ticketed person had their glorious moment. The other couple hundered people sat on the edge of their seats, trying to anticipate how the rest of us would be arranged to get our moment of glory.

Lucky for us, we'd snuck our way to the front row. While everyone else was forming a never-ending line through aisles of books, we jumped in and had our moment.

And this. This is my moment! I met The Pioneer Woman! I so wish I could have sat down with her and sipped on some Starbucks. I feel like she's a good friend. Knowing someone through their blog is so weird! I didn't tell her that I'd come do her dishes. I should have offered. I'm sure of her thousands and thousands of fans she would have slipped me a card with her contact information and invited me over to her house. Come on, stranger things have happened, right?

And of course, Melissa got to meet her too!

We finally landed in the car at 10:57. I didn't make it back home until nearly 1:00 am. Yes folks, that's an 8 hour tour. It was oh-so worth it!

I got her cookbook! And her signature! And I got my picture with her!

I felt like a middle school girl stalking a rock-band!

I got to meet a woman who has literally taught me how to cook (for which my husband is so grateful!). I got to people watch, and I got to enjoy a fantastic night with a fantastic friend. I'm still on cloud-nine! 

I carried my cookbook around with me all day today and showed it to everyone I encountered. In honor of meeting PW I made some orange mini muffins for my small group. She now has several new fans.

What a wonderful day!


Stacey said...

Just a weeee bit jealous! I'm a huge fan as well!! So fun!

Brandy said...

Wasn't meeting her so much fun!?! I was at the Portland signing too! So sorry you missed the talk/Q & A session she did! She was so charming and funny!

I video taped her whole talk and posted in on my site if you are interested ( Sorry for my camera shake at times - meeting her was just too exciting! :)

Thanks for sharing!

becca said...

I love it! I know that parking garage. Freaky place, eh?

What fun. I'm glad you got to the front of the line and thanks for telling us all about it!

Anonymous said...

I LOVE those boots!! I wonder if they come in Vegan?!

I'm on the hunt now!!!