My Favorite Event

May 5, 2008 | Adventures & Travel, TV, Movies, & Good Reads

I know, an author shouldn’t have favorites, but I really, really, love going to the Rose City Chapter’s Reader’s Luncheon for Literacy. Ah, let me count the reasons”

1) I go down in the most civilized form of travel available. The train. And when you take the train from Seattle to Portland, you have views like this:

And this (South Puget Sound):
And you can get a little work done:
No one confiscates your banana or your water bottle. You can work with the scenery rolling by and no worries about I-5 traffic and parking when you get to Portland. In fact, I walked from the train station to my hotel. How very green of me. We won’t mention the cupcake I picked up on the way from Cupcake Jones. Thank goodness they don’t have one of these in Seattle.2) And when I get to Portland, I stay at the same hotel as the luncheon, the Governor, which is this wonderful, elegant old hotel that has been lovingly restored. I had this wonderful corner room, ALL TO MYSELF. It was bright and sunny and I spent an hour curled up in a chair and read, feeling quite decadent. And there was the cupcake to help with that as well. This was just a huge treat for me, because I get very little time that isn’t wrapped up in writing, and family and kid stuff. And then if my rapture wasn’t complete enough, look what they handed me when I checked in:

Are you freakin’ kiddin’ me?! Room service Starbucks? I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. That or they were going to have to evict me. Now after I got over the idea of having a man in a uniform deliver my steaming hot, non-fat, one sugar in the raw latte (and walked my lazy butt downstairs and got my own) I took a knitting class that night at Knit-Purl, which also happens to be right across the street—which only added to my feeling so pampered—no one to cook for, no one to get some where. Just me knitting away for three hours with other knit geeks. Pinch me, I’d gone to heaven.

3) But here’s the icing on the cake, not to be confused with pile of frosting that was on my Cupcake Jones: the luncheon. Where I get to see old friends:

(Delilah Marvelle, Christina Arbini and Kelli Estes looking pretty) And there are the raffle tickets that I buy:
And there are the people who win the baskets:
Now I have a reputation of always hosting the lucky table. For two years running it was Earlee from Idaho who would sit at my table and win more baskets than would fit in her car. But this year, these were my lucky tablemates. Oh, yes, they won all that—books, chocolate, treats and goodies. And it even works for me, because I won one too—but then I entrusted it to Kelli to bring back to Seattle, loaded with goodies and chocolate, so you all are my witnesses on that if I get an empty bucket and a couple of used, chocolate stained paperbacks from her.3. I go to hear the speaker. They never miss. And this year was no exception. My good friend Suzanne Macpherson gave a hilarious talk and I made a fool of myself laughing way too loud. But she and her Barbies were hilarious. And, Suz, I still maintain that my Tammy doll was not the Barbie wanna-be slut you described. My Tammy was always a proper lady.
I think I smiled like this all the way home. Because it really is my favorite event.Got something you really like to do every year? Share! We could all use weekends like this and suggestions are always welcome.


  1. Christina Arbini

    That was a great day down in Portland and I was so glad to get the chance to spend some time with you prowling Powell’s. πŸ™‚ Let’s definitely get together for that dinner soon!

  2. piper

    Every May long weekend my friends and I head out of town for our favourite agility trial (dog stuff). We start early every morning, and run until evening, and then plan on going out to a nice restaurant. I is important to note that while we may be competing, we are having a lot of fun visiting with friends not seen very often, watching others run, supporting everyone and generally having a great time. Only two weeks to go. I can hardly wait.

  3. therese

    I also adore the Rose City Lunch for all the books, fun and friends. This year was organized really well, granting lots of socializing time. One of my fav authors/speakers always shows up too – all the way from Seattle! Yep, that’s you Elizabeth!

    This event is probably the only thing I do, every year. There’s always a different conference to try, new places to visit, family celebrations, etc. that keep my schedule in turmoil year to year. It’s a good thing the RCRW lunch is in my own backyard.

    Of course it is “my” chapter that sponsors the event and I am the Treasurer, but I did attend 2 lunches these past 6 years as just a “reader”. I love that this lunch raises money for literacy too! The inside scoop on that is, a few times our chapter lost money on the luncheon in order to up our donation to Oregon Literacy from the year before. How cool is that?

    See you next year, if not before!

  4. Maggie Lynch

    We so appreciated having you, Elizabeth, and all the other authors who come to our luncheon. And, lucky me, one of the books I bought was yours!

    It is wonderful to hear that the authors have as much fun as the readers. It is a wonderful event and this year we know we raised more than $2,000 for literacy. Lots of fun and for a good cause. πŸ™‚

  5. Kelli Estes

    Basket? What basket?


  6. Barbara Rae Robinson

    And we love to have you come to Portland for our luncheon, Elizabeth! You’re one of our favorite people and are always welcome at our events.

    And my favorite task is selling those lottery tickets that raise the money and provide people with wonderful baskets of goodies.

  7. Elizabeth

    I just can’t rave about this event enough. I’ve been to loads of these things, but Portland’s is the model for perfection! A joy to attend, both as an author and a reader.

    And Kelli, I put GPS in that basket, so I know where it has been . . . shame on you. πŸ™‚

  8. Diana Duncan

    Elizabeth, we love to have you come for the luncheon. It’s my favorite event of the year, too.

    And…this year…I actually WON a basket! First time to win anything, ever! πŸ™‚

    Not only do we have a fabulous time, but the proceeds benefit such a worthy cause. I can’t imagine what my life would be like without the joy of reading.

  9. Suzanne Macpherson

    Wasn’t it fun Elizabeth>? And whao, what did you do, photoshop my entire face? Cuz that’s a darn good photo of me, and these days that is a rare banana. Well, if you did photoshop me, just don’t tell. PS Your Tammy just wasn’t telling. At night she snuck off with Ken in the Barbie RV. If the pink RV is a-rockin, don’t come a-knockin! :~)

  10. Elizabeth

    Suz, not a drop or a pixal of Photoshop went into that photo. I’ll send you one. I know all about the rare photo phenom!

  11. Heather Hiestand

    Wow, you really worked this event into a mini-vacation. I’m going to have to remember all this for next year, even if I do only live 20 miles from the hotel!

  12. Keira Soleore

    Elizabeth, I’ve been out of the online world for a week or three, and see what I missed.

    Kelli and Christina: Hey, you need to let all the Eastsiders know when such rolicking good times are just a train ride away.



Subscribe to Elizabeth's Site News via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to Elizabeth\'s News and receive notifications of new posts by email.