At the Gathering the cocktail party is what Starfury calls “meet & greet”. The lucky attendees sit in groups around tables and the guests rotate and spent about 5 minutes per table. There’s actually no cocktails at this cocktail party, but there are small snacks and beverages (non-alcoholic and there was wine… unfortunately ).
I had booked this extra because everyone who attended it (con guests and attendees alike) during the first Gathering in 2016 was full of praise and that it had been a lot of fun. Again, after Andrew’s cancellation, I pretty much only went because it was already paid for, so might as well go.
Saturday started out rather slow (see last post) but somehow I managed not to have time to eat anything after breakfast and before the cocktail party. Unfortunately the tables were rather large and I sat at maximum distance from the plate of cut cheese and veggie sticks and in minimum distance to a bottle of red wine which kept magically refilling itself. NOT a good combination.
The rooms were in the basement of the building with a low ceiling and really bad accoustic as well, so it was sometimes difficult to understand what the other people at the table (incl. the guests) were saying. First guests at our table were Scott Kyle, Gillebride MacMillans, Elke Kriebel (the organizer) and then we had a round with no guest at all. So I got a bit bored and started texting my friend who was upstairs in her room and waited for me so we could go and grab some food.
Then Steven Cree was at our table, so things started to improve. I’ve met him before at the first Highlanders con in London in 2016 (8 months before) and it took him one look at me and he said: “We’ve met before.” Wow! He answered a few questions (that I didn’t understand) and then someone brought up his role in 300 and I simply had to tell him that my friend (the one upstairs) is a huge Eva Green fan. He said something nice about her and then the conversation went on but of course I had to text my friend immediately what Steven had said about Eva. I was still typing when I looked up and looked into Rik Rankin’s face who looked all strict at me and said: “Are we boring you?” I stammered and apology and meant to put my phone away but he was like: “no, no, go on, I want you to finish it”. I shrugged and finished the text much to the amusement of everyone else at the table.
Then Stephen Walters came to our table and again I didn’t understand much what was being said but at one point he asked everyone at the table what their favourite bands are (I said Queen) and my friend Lisa said Beatles. And yes, Beatles is apparently another trigger word. I am not surprised I left such a lasting impression on poor Stephen.
The cocktail party ended as a lot of fun (especially with the help of the good part of a bottle of red) but I was so ready for food when it was over. Texted my friend and she said she just went shopping and is on her way back to the hotel right now and I said I’m just leaving the con venue and about to head back to my room as well. Finished the text and realised I was suddenly surrounded by all the actors who were heading the same way with me. Felt a bit weird because I didn’t want them to give the impression, I was stalking them but when they entered the elevator, I just asked if they had room for one more and they were all: “Of course, always, just come in.”
So, I was in an elevator full of Outlander cast, when I suddenly hear a shy “Um, hi…” from the corner. It was my friend who just came back from her shopping.
So there I was, in an elevator full of Outlander cast (all male btw), basically squeezed in between Steven Cree and Rik Rankin, with my friend, the huge Eva Green fan, in the corner, and about a bottle of red wine in my system and only little food in my stomach. Naturally I thought it was a great idea to shout in Steven Cree’s direction: “Oy, Steven! Look! It’s my friend, the Eva Green fan!” He waved at my friend , said something like “Oh you like Eva Green then?” she, completely flabbergasted, stammered: “Yes… I love you! Er… I mean, I love HER!”
The whole elevator simply erupted with laughter.
My friend went beetroot red but Steven was a real sweetheart (yes he can be nice as well ) and said: “It’s okay, I get that all the time.” He said some really nice things about Eva as well and then everybody got out of the elevator and as soon as the doors closed and my friend and I were alone, we just freaked out.