The Great Aussie Blogger Meeting – Coffee, Laughs and a Neurotic Cat

So how was it?????

That’s what you’ve been wondering, right? What happened when the Great Margaret-Rose and the Nervous MOSY finally met in person? Were there earthquakes in Sydney? Did the Space-Time Continuum tear open? Did the sky rain with meteors?

Nah. We just had a fabulous time.

The following is a recounting of the experience from both sides. M-R has decided to close her own blog next week and will no longer be posting on it but you deserve her side of the story (she says nervously) as well as mine.

MOSY’s Version

Although I stepped into the lift in her building with a heart beating hard enough to make the walls bounce, I stepped out of it to be greeted by an old friend.

And that’s what it’s like, folks. That person with whom you’ve got along like the proverbial incendiary dwelling out in the Blogosphere is, in my experience at least, the person you will meet in person (so to speak).

Of course, M-R made the smart first move of offering me coffee almost as soon as I got in the door so how could I not love her?

So what did you do?

We hung out. That’s it. We talked, we ate, we laughed, we drank coffee, we went to lunch at lovely little places. It was just two friends hanging out together. We ventured out for various things that needed to be done and had a great time. Even a visit to the optometrist brought joy. While I waited for M-R, I wandered over to the bookshop across the road. Outside the door on the Sale table was another of those addictive 1000 Dot-to-Dot books! Score!

I didn’t need a tour of Sydney (I’ve seen it). I didn’t need to be ‘entertained’ (our conversations covered that). Just the chance to be together was payment enough for the journey and I was richly rewarded.

Oh, plus I got to eat a rather substantial amount of that delicious bread she makes.

But what was M-R like?

You’ve read her blog. Or blogs. (She’s had a few.) You’ve read her comments on your blog and those of her many friends. THAT is what she is like. The personification of WYSIWYG, as Su Leslie so cleverly described her in a comment on the last post.

Actually, that’s not quite right. In person she is actually more than you get through the ether. A life-giving force of humour, knowledge, passion and most of all, generosity. Margaret-Rose has a heart as big as that new apartment monstrosity she so despises. I practically had to push her over to let me take the dishes to the sink.

Did you meet the fabled Lui Stringer?

Yes I did. He hid in his little hidey hole in a credenza when I arrived but not to be outdone, I slid open the door and reached in to give him a scratch under the chin. I think he must have been paralysed by the audacity of my actions because he allowed it. Then, as I slid the door across again, he hissed at me.

This was to become a theme.

It’s rather disconcerting to spend three days being looked at by a cat as if you are a visiting serial killer.


This was when we came back from lunch on the last day. “Oh gods, you’re still here. I thought you’d left.”

Three days flew by all too quickly and it seems odd to know that I can’t just pop over for coffee and a laugh whenever I feel like it. Thank heavens for Mr Bell and Mr Edison and Mr Turing and Mr Sir Berners-Lee and their ilk that we can still stay in touch. And a little thanks to the Wright Brothers for the ability to ‘pop’ up to Sydney without a 10-hour car journey.

So, thinking of arranging a meeting with a favourite blogger? Do it. Do it now. You won’t regret it.

M-R’s Version

Having been apostrophised by Mrs Dempsey regarding the lack of need to meet her at the light rail stop at Central and been suitably cowed (I am a very nervous person, after all !), I waited in the little flat to hear the intercom sound and H’s familiar voice be heard – I have terrorised her by ‘phone on more than one occasion …

And then, as I stood outside the lift, anxious as buggery*, she was suddenly there ! – slim, vital and smiling, looking about 25!!! At which point I knew instantly that it was all OK: here was H, just as I knew she’d be, and life was good.

Much coffee from the Gaggia Classic, and many cups of tea. Some food, too, every so often. The only momentous example of that was when she took me to lunch yesterday, and we went to visit my friend Tino at his restaurante português, where we ate his mum’s delishus cannelloni (it’s very confusing, Portuguese food …) and drank a glass of the wonderful Terras d’el Rei red each.

Did I take her all around Sydney ? Did I even take her to, say, the Maritime Museum and Darling Harbour ? Did I show her the sights ? – did I what ! Oh, no, sorry – that was a lie: the real answer is no, I didn’t! I did take her to North Sydney/Blues Point, but only because I had to visit my adored optometrist and his even more adored optical technician; and there H was given many examples of my habit of smooching on the men who mean a lot to me. (Well, why not ?!) But that was more or less the extent of what she saw in Sydney.   :-/

I believe the rest of the time we talked. Amazin ain’t it ? 🙂 I think I gave her some talking time of her own; but to be truthful it seems upon reflection it was entirely the sound of my voice that was heard in the land (just like the turtle-dove).

H and I have many extraordinary similarities in our lives. We’re both quite mad, of course; and we’re separated by something like 26 years … but she makes me feel as if we’re the same age, and start wondering if I shouldn’t think about doing <X>, just as she has done. Dangerous, that ! [grin]

I can add only that when we realized she had a bit left on her Opal card (bus, train, ferry and light rail transport) and no way of reclaiming it, and she said “I can use it next time” that I understood her to have enjoyed herself in the company of this whingeing, grumpy old fart. REALLY mad, then …

I wait for the next occasion on which her family feels they can possibly do without their motivating force in their midst for a couple of days: it can’t come soon enough.


*you’d be anxious too, if you were an almost 72-y-o living a VERY unadventurous life on her own and about to meet an amazing young woman who can do anything and often does, as well as being someone who knows tons of stuff and is a wife and a mother of three boys. Why on earth would she not think “How did I let myself in for this boring time ???” …





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85 thoughts on “The Great Aussie Blogger Meeting – Coffee, Laughs and a Neurotic Cat

  1. What fun! I’m so glad you both had such a great time….after reading M-R’s side of things….I’m doubly sorry to hear she won’t have a blog….I didn’t even get to discover her and now she’s leaving…….alas….at least I got to meet her through you…..If you were both half as entertained as I was by only reading both accounts, then you had a fine time indeed!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Fated friends, clearly, from one who has no belief in fate. Margaret-Rose, I know you are reading this: You simply must stop this mention of age. It is a non-issue to we in this community. I met and made one of my closest and dearest friends when she was 89 and I…let me think…52. (I think I have that right.) People who care don’t care about people don’t care about age. Or any of that other sh*t other foolish people care about.

    Heather and Margaret-Rose, I am so happy the visit went as successfully as everyone else knew it would!
    🙂 🙂 🙂
    That is a credit to you both and how nice everyone knows you both are (well, ONE of you is–which one, I leave it to you to figure out.)

    Liked by 5 people

  3. This is fantastic and what a marvellous photo of the two of you! Having read both your blogs it is of no surprise to me that the two of you got along famously. My heart is warmed through and through. Xo to both of you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This made me extremely happy and gave me the hope that one day… maybe… I can get across those thousands of miles myself. I am still laughing about that photo of Lui. I’m going to nick it with a screen grab and keep it to hand for when I need a talking to – done, it’s on my desktop!

    Liked by 2 people

    • What a good idea, Hilary. 😀 Lui was hilarious. Cracked me up every day. He spent the first two days staring at me whenever I came near as if wondering when I was going to grab him and stuff him in a sack. On the last day he just looked at me as if to say, “When are you leaving?”

      Liked by 1 person

    • I have started holding my breath, HCG. Heather and I await your turning up so that we can cross-examine you about writing. It’s not that we have the slightest interest in seeing you, you understand … [grin]

      Liked by 2 people

  5. So pleased to see from the terrific photos of all three that you appreciated the time together. I’m sure Lui was only pretending to be offish!
    Sharing M-R is obviously something he’ll have to learn to do, and with further visits he will soon get the hang of hanging about together!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Thank both of you for the update! It sounds like you had a great time together, old friends meeting for the first time and all. Pretty much how I expected it to go – no real surprises – but it’s still nice to know that the impressions we get over the Internet can be so close to reality. Great photo of the two of you! A great bonus 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Heather and M-R, you two are adorable! The photo of the Aussie bloggers, and the recounting of your days together, put a very huge smile on my heart. I’m happy that you two have finally met face-to-face and cemented your friendship. As for Lui, he makes me giggle over the hissing and killer stares. That’s okay dear kitty, all is well again in your “I-only-love-the-whinger” world.

    Liked by 4 people

  8. OMG – I LOVE everything about this post! ❤
    I’m not surprised at all that your friendship picked up seamlessly in the real world as it did in the virtual one! … and I loved seeing the 2 of you together in a photo 🙂
    Lui is such a handsome fellow, but Heather *when* you come to visit me – unlike Lui – Theo will throw himself at your feet looking for your adoration 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  9. You know we were just talking about bliss? (well, I was!) 🙂 There’s a fair amount of it to be had in reading blogs and the wonderful camaraderie that exists on here. Nuff said 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, I know 🙂 I skirted around it at the time because my response then was that a lot of my bliss is in writing. But fun though it is, I find I can get seriously sidetracked and loose my thread of thought in the conversations. Already said it today but I repeat- attention span way less than that of a gnat and I’m blaming age 🙂 I’ve gone to iron and watch Wimbledon so be good while I’m gone.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Pingback: 2015: A Year For Doing Stuff | Master of Something I'm Yet To Discover

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