Whoa! I haven’t partied like THAT in a long time! It’s nice to know I could fit so many people in my house. Even now I pinch myself that they all found their way here. But really, how did it go? You’ll have to tell me because when something is at my house I can never tell. I’m too busy with my hostess duties.
I’ll tell you what I DID notice. The doorbell kept ringing and ringing and ringing! I met so many people I can’t remember all their names, but they were all book lovers. And such a creative vibe! It doesn’t even seem real that I got to entertain so many readers, bloggers, writers, and artists.
Did you see that knot of people at the top of the stairs? The hipsters drinking out of the whiskey glasses? They met each other after they got here and sat up there for hours discussing everything from literary theory to the best discount travel sites.
And then there was the group that stayed over by the fireplace; I guess they were lucky, in that crush of people to have a place to sit down on the hearth. I overheard a lot there about literary fiction. People were good natured about the crowd, though, and perched wherever they could.
In the sunroom there was lots of laughter, apparently connected to a disagreement over the best children’s literature. Everyone was advocating for their favorite childhood book characters. I merely smiled as I looked in, knowing quite well I had “Bread And Jam For Frances” upstairs in a bedroom, literally above their heads.
People formed groups organically, in a kind of human Dewey Decimal system. I met grandmothers, sci fi fans, hikers, librarians, poets, cooks, and doctoral students. Young mothers seemed clustered together, and the retirees stayed put on the upholstered chairs. People kept offering to help me but I really just wanted them to meet each other and have fun.
Mingling among the groups. I had little time to spend with each person. I did admit to someone that I don’t really know how to use twitter,and that the weekend I was trying to write my first blog post, I nearly burst into tears trying to crop the magpie picture on the header. I had hoped to get each person to just recommend to me ONE book, and I was going to keep them in a list on my phone so I wouldn’t lose it. But I couldn’t even keep up with my red solo cup of wine, much less my phone. I guess that will have to be a future blog post.
I would say there were one hundred people in the back yard. Some seemed to recognize flowers I had photographed for the blog. Others were out there to smoke or to get some fresh air. The few times I checked out there, I got some good tips on growing tomatoes.
I don’t regret catering in the barbecue. That’s the easiest way I know to feed 500 people on short notice. Certainly my guests had no great cuisine expectations, but there was no way I was entertaining without serving food. There is no banana pudding left, by the way.
Thanks to onecreativescientist, the ice chests were stocked with beer, soft drinks and ice. My few wine bottles were supplemented with donations from my gracious guests. Krugthethinker and thewaiting were absolute angels; they were two extra sets of hands to greet guests, keep drinks flowing, and direct people to the facilities.
I won’t even try to count the languages and nationalities represented. But wasn’t it cool how many made friends, exchanged emails and made plans to visit one another in India, Wales, Chile, England? And to read one another’s work?
As soon as I get this place cleaned up, I’m going to sit down and write some thank you notes.
Because I really am thankful that so many people stopped by to read my post. It WAS like a party for 500 people, one I would love to experience over and over again. In fact, I would love to know more about those who stopped by, and to make a new friend, or 499 friends. Welcoming all of you into my life, however briefly, is the best Fresh Press of all!