First off, I'd like to apologise for any rambling but I'm reconstructing memory off of my pocket pc after using handwriting recognition while under the influence of Grolsh.
I'd also like to apologise if I met you and forgot, or get details wrong or anything like that.
Now to the reportage…
A gathering of the great and the good in the Blogging world? In the middle of London? With Alcohol? How could it fail?
Quite simply it couldn't, and didn't.
Rather unfortunately I forgot that the location had a downstairs bar – so I spent the first half hour upstairs with a load of city types, eavesdropping on discussions about Anthony Worrel-Thompson until I saw some bloggy types heading downstairs.
Small, dark, hot and crowded immediately sprung to mind and I may well have turned and ran if I hadn't seen the friendly faces of Pix and Mark. So I spent sometime getting enough Grolsh (at £3.25 a bottle!) into me to combat my shyness. The first person to approach me was Steven quickly followed by Laurie (Who's blog I can't remember – sorry) and Simon. James who organised the whole thing came over (although I didn't recognise him as the mental picture I have of him is with blue hair). We had a nice chat, mainly about ambulancing and I forgot to ask him why his blog is called “imajes”.
Annie Mole was very friendly although I was stunned that she wasn't 5ft tall with little brown glasses (which is how I pictured her – for some reason) unfortunately I was struck a bit dumb with hero worship there…
Gary Turner managed to escape my assassination attempt by leaving early, which was very sad as I really wanted to talk to him. Dave wondered why he was on my hit-list, although I think he understood by the end of the night. (I blogged a list of people I'd need to kill so that those of us who aren't the worlds best writers can stand a chance. A bit like a new author wanting to kill off Steven King, Clive Barker, Mary Gentle and Douglas Coupland).
I then found myself surrounded by Europe in the form of Loic and Gerard, Loic being taller than I imagined and both of them speaking better English than me. Once more there wasn't enough time to have a proper chat with them although photos were taken.
The evening thinned rather quickly, mainly due to people going to work the next day so I missed speaking to the following people.
And then there were the people who I just didn't recognise/speak to/left before I could corner them.
It was midnight by the time the last of us left (the pleasures of shift work meant I wanted everyone to stay and play until I wanted to go home, but everyone else had work the next day). I managed to get to Tottenham Court Road, but missed the last Central line train – so I scrambled back to Trafalgar square where I got a night bus home. The night bus takes a route right through my “work patch” and was, for some reason full of Chinese people. I've never thought of Newham as having a large Chinese population but I suppose most of them must commute.
So serious kudos to James Cox for organising the whole thing and a big thanks for anyone who came over to talk to the terminally shy ambulance man.
When is the next one?