I wanted to attend Blogher ’08, but a couple of things held me back from registering. First, I’ve only been blogging a short time, since May on this WordPress site. I didn’t feel qualified to attend with only 2 months of serious blogging under my belt. Also, I was laid off from my part time job as a food server at Julia’s Kitchen. With less income coming in, it didn’t seem like a good time to spend money on a conference. The thing was, I was dying to go and meet some of the other women bloggers. I had met some through Twitter.com and some I had stumbled upon their blogs randomly, and they were amazing women – full of humor, caring, creativity, and depth. They had inspired me to begin blogging in a more professional way.
I was so sad thinking that the women who I had come to think of as friends were going to be in San Francisco, right in my own backyard practically (I live about an hour from SF), and I wasn’t going to get to meet them. Then an amazing thing happened! (Shhh…I think I used “The Secret“!) I heard about The People’s Party from Megan (@velveteenmind, http://velveteenmind.com/)! I read it on her blog and I immediately wrote to her and asked her if I could come, she said, “YES!” Then I wrote her back and asked if I could bring Angela, and she said, “YES! But we may run out of drink tickets so be prepared with cash just in case.” No problem!
Angela and I drove into San Francisco together, parked and found the Westin St. Francis just fine. Angela is one of my best friends and our joke of the night was that she was my “entourage”. Finding the party was another thing, we wandered through the corridors for a bit, even scored a schwag bag from a medical convention! As we carried the bags away on our quest to find The People’s Party the doctors we passed gave us strange looks, obviously thinking, “Yeah right, sureee you’re doctors!” Okay, they were right, but still.
Finally we heard women’s voices and I said, “That HAS to be it!”. We followed the voices and found it, the BlogHer People’s Party! woo! We were given two drink tickets apiece as we entered and pretty much headed straight for the bar and some white wine. Next we picked up our schwag bags, which were full of fun stuff! Even a hardback book that I was planning to buy! (shhh…i must have used “The Secret” again!)
The next order of business was finding my friends. It was harder than I thought it would be! It was a dimmly lit room and I had to walk by casually and stare at people’s name tags, without tripping and spilling my wine, to see if i knew them or not! The person I wanted to find the most was Tina Cruz (@sendchocolate, http://casadecruz.blogspot.com/). I found Megan and said hello and we took a pic, and I asked her if she’d seen Tina, she said no. I chatted with a few other bloggers and we exchanged business cards. Next, out in the hall I saw Erin! (@QueenofSpain, http://queenofspainblog.com/) Erin has done so much live blogging (which she is a natural and amazing at) that I knew her instantly! She said, “It’s lauralovesart!” and I said, “It’s Queen of Spain!” and we hugged. She was with a guy from photrade.com and we took a couple of pics together to commemorate. So fun to see her in person! I could totally drink some wine with that girl! I asked Erin if she had seen Tina and she said no. Angela and I headed back inside and mingled.
Next I saw Laura Fitten! (@pistacio, http://pistachioconsulting.com/) I didn’t even expect to see her because she had told me she would probably not make it and so we had talked about meeting later in the week at a Tweetup. It was really fun to see her in person, and it felt like a bonus since I wasn’t expecting her!
We came back to the hall and Erin said, “Tina’s down there by the bathroom!”, so I hurried down and found Tina (@sendchocolate), Leah (@califmom, http://www.califmom.com/) and Lucretia (@geekmommy, http://www.geekmommy.net/) all sitting in a circle on the floor near the bathroom of all things! I pounced on them! Then I joined the circle to catch up, then someone said that The Bloggess was in the bathroom so we went to investigate…
I knew Jenny, the Bloggess, was there at the party and I loveee her blog! (@theBloggess, http://thebloggess.com/) She has an awesome sense of humor! I reallyyy wanted to get a picture with her. She was there, and then she disappeared before I could talk to her. Finally she was back and I went to talk to her and she was sooo cute and funny! Later in the night she was holding court in the bathroom of all places, drinking wine and sitting on the counter! Had a blast hanging with her, I just love her! I could definitely drink some wine with her too!
Mrs. Flinger licked me. With a sticker, and for real. Leslie has the cutest twitter personality and is even more fun in person! (@mrsflinger, http://mrs.flinger.us/) I love love love her! We screamed “Squeee!” when we saw each other! It was amazing to meet her in person!
I also got to meet Sweetney! Tracey was so kool! (@sweetney, http://www.sweetney.com). I was just adoring all these women!
Angela and I went back to the main room for her to get another glass of wine, I sat my glass up on the counter and the bartender filled it up, I was trying to slow down, didn’t happen. Out of nowhere two engineers from Yahoo appeared and one started dancing with me. They were nice, but wouldn’t give me a straight answer as to why two guys from Yahoo were at a women’s blogging partay!? They wanted to take us dancing, but I was there to see my friends so we said goodbye.
Next the party was winding down and we ended up in the bar at the Westin with Leah and Tina. They were hungry and Angela and I needed to sober up before driving so we went to Denny’s nearby. Had a great time but the service was slow as molasses. Felt like we were there for three hours!
Angela drove us to her apartment in Albany, then I drove myself home. It’s been a long time since I got home after sunrise!
I had a blast at the BlogHer People’s Party and I am so grateful to Megan for inviting me. It was truly a sureal experience meeting women I felt I knew so well from seeing their pictures and reading their words on their blogs and twitter. Now I really know them in person and I feel like I have a bunch of new BFF’s, Best Friends Forever! Fun, fun time!
BlogHer ’09 here I come! woo! (definitely using “The Secret”!)
I met many more women than I could mention here, and I have a lot more fun and amazing pics from the party than I could post here, maybe of YOU! please check my flickr.com photo stream at: http://flickr.com/photos/lauralovesart/
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