Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Meeting book buddies

Jelani visiting the Sahara
Today's Armchair BEA topic:  Share a positive "real life" experience with books, either by way of your own partnerships in your community, a book signing you went to, or possibly even a get together with fellow book bloggers.  Tell us all about it!
I've been meeting other book lovers for years (click blue links to read more about them).  While discussing Oprah's books in the 1990s, a group of us coalesced and called ourselves the Book Buddies.

One August Sunday in 1998, several buddies came to Chattanooga Jelani from California, Francesca and her family from Michigan, and Donna from St. Louis so we could all meet each other.  We converged on my church, where I preached and Jelani provided the special music.  He has a beautiful voice!  And then we ate lunch around a big table and talked for a couple of hours or so.
Donna (above left) and I then drove up the east coast to visit three other buddies Maggie (above right), Meg, and NancyMaggie took in two strangers overnight, though we had all been getting acquainted online for more than two years.  All the people I've met are as wonderful in person as they are online.

Let's see, I dined with June @ Spatter when she was in Chattanooga with her friend (now my friend) Carla in 2008.  In the meantime, Carla has moved here, was at my New Year's Day party, and we ran into each other on Monday while having lunch with other friends.  Moving right along ... I met Susan @ Patchwork Reflections on an extremely hot day in 2007 at the Mudpie, a little restaurant on the North Shore.

Jenn and Bonnie
Jenn dropped by my house on the last day of 2010, with her husband and youngest child.  They were on their way to St. Louis from Atlanta, and Chattanooga just happens to be on that route.

Stephanie @ Confessions of a Bookaholic had her husband and all three of their kids with her, when they stopped in Chattanooga for a visit.  They were on their way home from a vacation.

This is Marylyn, who is a Marine as well as a book lover.  She had this pink scooter while stationed in South Korea.  When she's home on leave, she sometimes drives up from Georgia to visit family — and me! — in Chattanooga.  She's part of my online Book Buddies group.

If phone calls count as "meeting," I have talked to Margreet in the Netherlands several times.  I also talked to the famous Dewey of Dewey's 24-Hour Readathon.  I've met more bloggers, but that's all I can think of, at the moment.

(as my memory brings others to mind):

A few years ago, I drove to Atlanta with Donna (above) to meet Annette.  We had a good visit that day, before Annette flew home to California.  She and most of these I've pictured in this post are now Facebook friends, so we have gotten to know each other well over the years.  (That includes lots of book friends I have never met face to face.)  Sorry, Annette, but it took our FB exchange to remind me! 

And now I need to add Margie from Southern California and Hawaii.  I've talked to her by phone as well.

Even after Madge left the first comment on this post, I forgot to add her to this list.  We have also been in touch by phone and, as you can see by her picture below, Madge has a great sense of humor.  The English part of the sign says, "No Turning over, Please."  So it looks like Madge is "climbing" over, instead.
Madge in Japan


Anonymous said...

I also was in the original bookbuddies and a lot of us met in Chicago too, A great group of people who stayed together for years. Now I have moved on but still look upon those relationships fondly.

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Madge is the one who NAMED us "the Book Buddies." Hi, Madge.

Helen's Book Blog said...

You have had such great relationships and encounters with your book buddies; that's great! A small group of So Cal book bloggers got together at my house a year or so ago and it was fun to put faces to blogs!

Bonnie Jacobs said...

I have updated this post to add a few more book buddies to my list.

Anonymous said...

R u sure it was me than named us? Not sure.

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Madge, no, I'm not sure, but that's what my memory told me. At my age, that could be problematical. Let's ask Donna and Maggie and Jelani and Francesca and the others.

Annette said...

Ah, yes...our Excellent Adventure in Atlanta! What fun! And, Margreet and I spent a day together in Holland! And back then, when Margie was on the Mainland we were neighbors. Small world, good times. :)

Annette said...

Ah, yes...our Excellent Adventure in Atlanta! And back then when Margie was on the mainland we were neighbors. And, I spent a day in Holland with Margreet in '07! Small world, good times, good people. :)

The Housework Can Wait said...

You have such a great network of blogger friends! How fun, and it sounds like you have a blast together!

Here's my Armchair BEA Networking Post!!

Rosemary said...

Bonnie, you have done a great job with this blog -- very nice! I really think it may have been Gigi (Mary Grace) who gave us the name. Still not sure though.

Take care,

Rosemary said...

Your blog is very, very nice. I actually think it was Gigi who gave us the name Book Buddies, but I'm not sure. Rosemary

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Mary Grace (Gigi) didn't join us until late in the game, and I think we already had the name by then. I'll ask her, though.

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Jelani just emailed me:

That was a great moment in time, driving up to Chattanooga, meeting you, your mother, Donna, Francesca, Dennis, David... I remember the singing in your sweet church, then sitting around that big round table. A very sweet and memorable day. Without the internet or the Oprah book club, we would have passed each other on the street and missed out on our many cyber meetings. Wow!


Bonnie Jacobs said...

I miss our book discussions. That's why I started my Book Buddies blog, to keep discussing a book a month. If anybuddy wants to join us, see what we're reading now:

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Maggie emailed me:

no clue who named us the Book Buddies.

Ryan said...

Man I used to love BEA when I worked in publishing. Would love to go again!

Ginnie said...

I think it's amazing how the world opens up to us when we open up to it ! You are a shining example of this Bonnie.