Okay, it felt an awful like a first date, and in a way it was. We met on the internet six months ago. I read something she wrote, then sent an email in reply. She answered and then soon we were MySpace friends. I began to send her books. She began to send Bella candles and soaps. We posted comments and messages on each other’s pages and even though we had the other person’s cell number, we never picked up the phone.
It was a cyber relationship. And it worked. But now we were going to meet and just as the plane touched down in Bozeman (after a brief stop over in Butte) I found myself wishing I hadn’t packed my make up bag, wanting lipstick and a hair brush as though I needed somehow to make a great first impression on Kari.
Walking towards baggage claim I got butterflies. What was I doing here? I don’t even know her. She might not even want me at her house….
I spotted her then, approximately at the same time she spotted me. “You’re here,” Kari said laughing.
“You’re little,” I said as Kari wasn’t much more than a half inch to an inch taller than me.
“You’re shorter than you look in your website photos,” she answered. We hugged. Awkwardly.
We waited for my luggage and then headed for her car in the parking lot. The Bozeman airport is small, the parking lot literally across a narrow lane from the airport entrance. We reached her car in maybe a minute. Loaded my luggage. Kari reminded me about my seatbelt. I said, right, thanks mom.
We kept smiling as we talked. I’m here. You’re here. This is kind of weird. But it’s awesome. Weird and awesome and it turns out Kari’s husband has spent the last few days cleaning to get the house sparkling for me. I even got new pillows. I’m not sure if she went ahead and bought new towels. Apparently there was discussion that Jane needed nice towels.
Like a perfect media escort, Kari drove me to the Barnes & Noble in Bozeman and then across town to the Borders where I signed stock. Both stores had a ton of my books and in B&N Kari and I kept giggling that we were on our first date. It felt like it. I mean, I’d only met her 6 months ago and we’d never even talked on the phone but here I was, going to Happy Hour at her 86 year old grandmother’s home in half an hour with her family, then drinks and dinner with ten of her best friends.
Fortunately Kari has an incredible family and a great laugh. When she laughs you have to laugh. And she likes to laugh. Her entire face lights up and she sounds so damn happy that you’re happy, too.
If you’re on MySpace make Kari your friend. She’s awesome. Smart, funny, kind and soulful–and best of all, she’ll take you home and feed you dinner and make you part of the family.
When Kari dropped me off at the airport at 7 am, I felt like I mattered and knew that no matter where I go, I will always have a second home in Bozeman.
16 Comments / Add Your Comment →
Darn you!! Making me bawl my eyeballs out of my head!!
I just love you, Jane Porter. I had the most incredible time while you were here. I felt like I was in the presence of royalty and yet so comfortable like we’ve been friends forever.
Thank you for your extreme generosity by blessing my friends and me at Plonk and then all the fun goodie bags… I told you they would be super impressed.
After chatting with you, Dale and Lori into the wee hours of the morning, Collin and I still talked for the longest time about how wonderful you are and how weird it was that you were sleeping in the next room!
Yes, I did buy new towels for you. You are a new towel kind of guest. lol!
Many of the girls have written me on myspace and they also had the best time ever and feel so honored to have heard all the background and inside scoops on Flirting, Odd Mom and Frog… as you call them.
My grandma, dad and uncles were all dressed up for you and it was so cute to see them all excited for the special guest at what we call Happy Hour… the hour everyday when we get together as a family and share what’s going on in our lives.
Please remember that you are family now and that you will always have a home here in Montana.
My kids just loved meeting you but are pretty relieved that the cleaning can stop now. Collin was a rock star cleaning the garage and throwing away the rotten pumpkins that were sitting in the bird bath for about 2 months!!! ha!!!
I loved being your cyber-friend but being your real-in-the-flesh friend is the best ever! Miss you already!
What an amazing night it was to drive from Billings to meet the amazing and so beautiful YOU.
We all had the time of our lives meeting you. We have heard so much about you from Kari and Myspace, but it was wonderful to spend time getting to know you.
Thank you so much for the kind gifts, laughter, and the time you spent here in MONTANA.
“You probably didn’t realize that we had HIGH TIDE here in MT” we are full of surprises. :0)
The pictures are wonderful and show what a great time we all had.
I am almost done with the book and can’t wait to share it with my Idaho friends(old book club girls) they are going to LOVE Odd Mom Out.
Had a Blast~ Chill
Thanks so much for taking time out to come and hang out with us here in MT. You have really inspired me to take a closer look at my life, loosen up, and have more fun. It was an honor to get to meet you and chat in person.
It was such a fabulous evening sharing time with you and hearing about your passion for writing. You have been blessed with such great successes and I can see why! You love what you do and it shows…..That is inspiring!
What a joy for me to be able to join you-thanks to Kari for organizing it and also to you being willing to come visit us in person!
I love Odd Mom Out and hope to read your other books! Thank you so very much for personalizing the books I bought for my friends. Your autograph and friendly message make them even more special gifts! They will be so thrilled~
I look forward to continuing to visit via myspace and even better…. maybe see you again in person. These “girls night out” events are good for all of us!
Thank you for being so gracious to treat us to cocktails before dinner…. we wanted to spoil you not visa versa~ nonetheless, many thanks.
I look forward to your many future writings and wish you continued success! You are so inspiring and it was an absolute privilege to get to enjoy an evening out together.
Many blessings….Take care,
“Gourmet Candle Gal”
Thanks to all of you for making it such a great night!! And for everyone who couldn’t be there, Kari’s posted a ton of photos and a great story of her own about my trip to Bozeman on her blog on her MySpace page. Check it out! http://www.myspace.com/karilandersen
Aww. Kari such a sweetheart! So sweet of her husband to clean and clean until the house is sparkling clean. (Weird sentence!) and… Kari is sooo wicked cool… totally love her energy and I can imagine hanging out with her is all fun and exciting. =) I am soo glad you had so much funny in MT.
I had such a wonderful time meeting you the other night. Kari began telling me about you several months ago and she highly encouraged me to read your books. As you might remember (from Myspace), I primarily read nonfiction and was absolutely DELIGHTED when I found myself breaking out of my “zone” and not only reading your books, but RELATING to the characters in so many ways.
Needless to say, I was HOOKED from day one! And, Kari was so right…you are such a delight and a huge inspiration!
I can hardly wait to see what you have in store for us NEXT and I am spreading the word on your books. I just lent my copies out to a friend last night who is excited to “pass them on”.
Thanks so much for coming to Montana and sharing your stories, time, gifts, positive energy and your smile with us!
It was a TREAT!
Jane I LOVE this blog! Kari is such a wonderful person and I loved the way you wrote about your “first date”. Knowing Kari and then getting to know you on Myspace is such a treat-I’m just bummed I couldn’t be there with you guys. I know someday we will meet (Kari said she was working on you for Vegas)!
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Geez, makes me wish I lived in Montana! Sounds like you all had a blast meeting. From that, Kari sent me a copy of Flirting and I LOVED it! The first grown up book I’ve read – and finished – in years! I’ll be adding some Jane Porter to my Christmas list!
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