Wednesday, November 02, 2005

So Much To Say! (Part II-The Surprise!)

Damn Blogger! It was being pissy, so now I'm cramped for time... By now, many of you have read from Addict's site that I stopped in to see her at her shop yesterday.

So yes, while the Stones were the main reason for coming to Portland, and taking j.a.g was a fringe benefit (plus the free room!), a thought occurred to me about a month ago. Salem, OR is just down I-5 from Portland. Addict, who has long been one of my favorite bloggers since she started, lives in Salem! Maybe I should plan to go down for a visit since I'm in the "neighborhood". Well, my mind rushes at this thought, and in true Os form, I decide that I wouldn't tell her I was coming--that I'd surprise her. She would certainly not be the first to be the recipient of a surprise visit (go ask Moose all about that)! So in my best cyber-stalking mode, I determined that she probably would be taking care of her grandson in the morning, then showing up to work in the afternoon. When you're the owner, you can get away with doing things like that!

I still wasn't positive about doing it, until about 2 weeks ago, when she happened to be my 50,000th visitor! I think I promised a prize or something, but wasn't sure how I'd get it to her. Of course, I knew I'd be hand-delivering it! I couldn't keep this one to myself any longer! Rachel suggested the Montana huckleberry chocolate (a standard "Made in Montana" gift). Moose knew, as did Lizabeth, j.a.g and Kalani. I think Kalani almost wet herself when I told her. She insisted that she get a phone call from us when I got there. So everything was set up for her surprise.

I get to Salem yesterday after driving through rain, the like of which this hick from Montana has never seen. I can drive for hours in a blizzard with limited visibility, but this was something I'd never done before! Anyway, I find her shop (complete with two cop cars with their lights flashing out in front--they were actually next door though), and find a parking spot on the street nearby. I wander in, only to find out from the girl behind the counter that Addict won't be in for about another half hour. Fine. I can drive around Salem and check out the sights. Well, that bored me fairly quickly, so I get back downtown, and decide to wait for her. She calls in to tell them that she's going to be late getting in. The girl tells her that there are people waiting to see her (me and some local woman). The woman leaves, I'm getting anxious. I talk the girl into letting me sit in her studio to wait. I'm looking around at various instruments of torture, all nicely sterilized, thank you! I start to worry--will she recognize me? Will she call the cops? Will she scream and go nuts? What have I gotten myself into??? I have the NEW CAMERA in hand, waiting to catch the initial horror on her face (for Kalani's benefit--she preferred video, but I didn't get that set in time). Then it happened....

Around the door comes in this person. This goddess. This Addict. I snapped a quick picture of the shock and horror on her face. I put the camera down and look at her. Apparently I look pretty much the same as I do on my site, because there was no question that she knew it was me! Big hugs, followed by the presentation of the prizes (I had to have a "real" reason to be there!). And then we started talking. We called Kalani. She was jacked! Addict had never spoken to her so they spent some good time on the phone. I have a picture of Addict and Kalani on the phone. From our end, anyway. She made customers wait while we talked. I spent about an hour and a half there. Her grandson came in with a different daughter. Very cute kid--he's learning all sorts of new words! Her husband came by, so I got to meet him. Finally, I had to get out of there so that j.a.g and I wouldn't be late for the concert. But I could have stayed there for hours. We clicked immediately. She looks about 10 years younger than I had expected. She looks VERY much like Audra (or vice-versa, I guess). She is a little shy about posting her face on the internet, so this is a treat--Addict & Os:

She is exactly what you'd expect her to be like. Witty, charming, caring, somewhat maternal (OK, very maternal), and I can't believe that we actually got together like this! This was a huge highlight of the past couple of months!

Finally, to dispel the rumors any further--at no time was I poked, pierced or prodded! Just a few great hugs. Thanks E for a wonderful, if brief, encounter. I hope that sometime down the road there will be another!

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