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Gerard Butler GALS

Halfway Around the World and Back


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It was just before Christmas last year that I found GALS. And it was like finding the perfect house. One that has been built with you in mind. I felt at home straight away. Much of that had to do with the way I was greeted and then accepted by everyone here. It also had to do with the fun way the site ran, the respect that still allowed a little naughtyness.

So when I read about the convention, I immediatly wanted to come. Don't really know why other than that I wanted to meet the wonderful people I had been communicating with on a daily (and sometimes more than once a day) basis. So, I mentioned it to hubby and funnily enough he said OK as long as I saved the money and not use credit. Meh, I thought, I can do that. And I did.

It took a bit of organising from the point of view of work (my project was due to go to the executive on 7 June), the due date for my grandchild (28 June so seemed OK) and then accommodation sharing.

On the latter Risa wanted to come early and we were both travelling a long way and wanted to make the most of it. So, a few telephone conversations and it was organised.

I had an awful run up. Work was just about as stressful as could be and I was beginning to see the trip as an escape from it all. Firstly, from February it seemed a long time till June and then, bang, 4 June was there and I was on the plane to LA and then Vegas.

The flight out was great. It is about 12,000 kilometers (sorry no idea about miles), and 14 hours flying. But luck began at the airport when I found out the plane was not full and I had 3 seats to myself. I'm only 5'2" so could stretch out. Yes!!!! Not much happened except that we got breakfast around 4.30pm LA time. Strange that, bacon and eggs in the afternoon. Stranger still when you recon it was 9.30am the next day in Australia LOL.

I left Sydney on Sunday at 10.30PM and arrived in Vegas on the same day at 10.30pm (same time) after a total of 17 hours travel time. Don't you just love time travel.

By the time I arrived at the Sahara at 11.45pm with nothing in my stomach since "breakfast" at 4.30 pm. By the time I knocked on the door, Risa was snoozing .... and I didn't blame her.

Here is where the first bestest thing happened... it was like we were meeting not for the first time but after a long absence between very very good friends. It was just like...."click".... I don't think I have felt like that with anyone since I met my friend Kristine over 29 years ago... and she is like a sister to me.

So here are Risa and I, sitting in the Caravan Cafe in the Sahara at 1.30am having dinner, and talking and talking. It was great. I wasn't even tired but why would I be, its only about midday in Australia LOL. We eventually got to be around 2.30pam. What we didn't know at that time was that it was going to be our usual bedtime, and then about 4 hours of broken sleep and up and running again.

We woke around 7.30am to a wonderfully beautiful Las Vegas day. We chatted, got dressed, had some light breakfast at the Coffee Grind (I think that was what it was called), booked some tours and shows (Grand Canyon, Zumanity and Thunder Down Under) and then out into the hot, hot day and a trip to the strip. That was everything it was cracked up to be, loud, glitzy, more slot machines (we call them poker machines) than anyone would ever want to see in one lifetime, amazing hotels, and lots of bottled water.

Our goal had been the Venetian because Risa wanted a gondola ride. We had both been to the real Venice where the gondola rides are quite expensive and thought it might be different here. Alas, it didn't seem to be $15 if you wanted to wait till a gondola was full or $60 for a personal ride. So, we went inside instead to be faced with a Venetian street ... but inside. OK, not expected, interesting and, well, a bit unusual. Of course, we found that it was not in the least unusual for Vegas.

Some more sightseeing then, because we were both suffering from the heat (it was -2C in the morning on the day I left Canberra and 12C during the day - I think about 35F) it was time to return to the Sahara. Yet, we didn't quite get there straight away. Instead, Risa, knowing I was interested in Star Trek (truth is I am a real trekkie....*shy smile*), suggested we go to the Hilton to the Star Trek Experience. So, off the monorail and into the cool of the Hilton.

Now talk about a real friend. Here she was, not wanting to spend $15 on a gondola ride, then, just to join me, she spends $58 to go through the whole Start Trek thing with me. I could have hugged her (and did a lot later) but we were still getting to that level of friendship.

Here we are, and I am ratting on about uniforms worn by Scott Bakula as Capt Jonathan Archer in Enterprise, and that worn by William Shatner and Nichelle Nichols in the original, then that of Kirk and Picard from the movie "Generations" and I can just about see Risa wondering what the hell she is doing with this mad woman. But she stuck it out and I think secretly enjoyed it. At least until we were nearly assimilated by the Borg. Oh yes, the experience was 3D and with little thumps in the back from the "shuttle" seat, sprays of air and water in the face and rocked about, it really was an experience. We even got our photos taken with a "real" Klingon and on the bridge of the Next Gen Enterprise.

Now I must tell about the tribbles. As you may all know, in the original series there was an episode, a famous one, called "The trouble with Tribbles". These cute football sized cuddly creatures multiplied until they clogged all the ships workings and nearly killed everyone. But they are cute and fluffy and they purr.

So here are Risa and I walking out of this scarey ride (and yes, we screamed loudly), and there is a box of tribbles. So, cute as they are, Risa picks one up and when going to cuddle it, shakes it. It trembles and purrs and the scream she let out, while the tribble flew through the air was blood curdling (Oh OK, not quite so loud). Everyone in the souvineer shop stopped, looked and to dear Risa's red face, giggled. I wasn't sure whether to comfort her or giggle myself. I opted out for a bit of both. Sorry Risa *shamed face*.

After all that excitement, we went back to the hotel to get ready for the Cirque du Soleil performance called Zumanity. Now that, after everthing already, was a great, and erotic experience.

Ok, I should go on but I'm tired, more later. Hugs

Cat

Edited by Terry's Witch
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It was just before Christmas last year that I found GALS. And it was like finding the perfect house. One that has been built with you in mind. I felt at home straight away. Much of that had to do with the way I was greeted and then accepted by everyone here. It also had to do with the fun way the site ran, the respect that still allowed a little naughtyness.

So when I read about the convention, I immediatly wanted to come. Don't really know why other than that I wanted to meet the wonderful people I had been communicating with on a daily (and sometimes more than once a day) basis. So, I mentioned it to hubby and funnily enough he said OK as long as I saved the money and not use credit. Meh, I thought, I can do that. And I did.

It took a bit of organising from the point of view of work (my project was due to go to the executive on 7 June), the due date for my grandchild (28 June so seemed OK) and then accommodation sharing.

On the latter Risa wanted to come early and we were both travelling a long way and wanted to make the most of it. So, a few telephone conversations and it was organised.

I had an awful run up. Work was just about as stressful as could be and I was beginning to see the trip as an escape from it all. Firstly, from February it seemed a long time till June and then, bang, 4 June was there and I was on the plane to LA and then Vegas.

The flight out was great. It is about 12,000 kilometers (sorry no idea about miles), and 14 hours flying. But luck began at the airport when I found out the plane was not full and I had 3 seats to myself. I'm only 5'2" so could stretch out. Yes!!!! Not much happened except that we got breakfast around 4.30pm LA time. Strange that, bacon and eggs in the afternoon. Stranger still when you recon it was 9.30am the next day in Australia LOL.

I left Sydney on Sunday at 10.30PM and arrived in Vegas on the same day at 10.30pm (same time) after a total of 17 hours travel time. Don't you just love time travel.

By the time I arrived at the Sahara at 11.45pm with nothing in my stomach since "breakfast" at 4.30 pm. By the time I knocked on the door, Risa was snoozing .... and I didn't blame her.

Here is where the first bestest thing happened... it was like we were meeting not for the first time but after a long absence between very very good friends. It was just like...."click".... I don't think I have felt like that with anyone since I met my friend Kristine over 29 years ago... and she is like a sister to me.

So here are Risa and I, sitting in the Caravan Cafe in the Sahara at 1.30am having dinner, and talking and talking. It was great. I wasn't even tired but why would I be, its only about midday in Australia LOL. We eventually got to be around 2.30pm. What we didn't know at that time was that it was going to be our usual bedtime, and then about 4 hours of broken sleep and up and running again.

We woke around 7.30am to a wonderfully beautiful Las Vegas day. We chatted, got dressed, had some light breakfast at the Coffee Grind (I think that was what it was called) and then out into the hot, hot day and a trip to the strip. That was everything it was cracked up to be, loud, glitzy, more slot machines (we call them poker machines) than anyone would ever want to see in one lifetime, amazing hotels, and lots of bottled water.

Our goal had been the Venetian because Risa wanted a gondola ride. We had both been to the real Venice where the gondola rides are quite expensive and thought it might be different here. Alas, it didn't seem to be. So, we went inside instead to be faced with a Venetian street ... but inside. OK, not expected, interesting and, well, a bit unusual. Of course, we found that it was not in the least unusual for Vegas.

Some more sightseeing then, because we were both suffering from the heat (it was -2C in Canberra when I left) it was time to return to the Sahara. Yet, we didn't quite get there straight away. Instead, Risa, knowing I was interested in Star Trek (truth is I am a real trekkie....*shy smile*), suggested we go to the Hilton to the Star Trek Experience. So, off the monorail and into the cool of the Hilton.

Now talk about a real friend. Here she was, not wanting to spend $15 on a gondola ride, then, just to join me, she spends $58 to go through the whole Start Trek thing with me. I could have hugged her (and did a lot later) but we were still getting to that level of friendship.

Here we are, and I am ratting on about uniforms worn by Scott Bakula as Capt Jonathan Archer in Enterprise, and that worn by William Shatner and Nichelle Nichols in the original, then that of Kirk and Picard from the movie generations and I can just about see Risa wondering what the hell she is doing with this mad woman. But she stuck it out and I think secretly enjoyed it. At least until we were nearly assimilated by the Borg. Oh yes, the experience was 3D and with little thumps in the back from the "shuttle" seat, sprays of air and water in the face and rocked about, it really was an experience. We even got our photos taken with a "real" Klingon and on the bridge of the Next Gen Enterprise.

Now I must tell about the tribbles. As you may all know, in the original series there was an episode, a famous one, called "The trouble with Tribbles". These creatures multiplied until they clogged all the ships workings and nearly killed everyone. But they are cute and fluffy and they purr.

So here are Risa and I walking out of this scarey ride (and yes, we screamed loudly), and there is a box of tribbles. So, cute as they are, Risa picks one up and when going to cuddle it, shakes it. It trembles and purrs and the scream she let out, while the tribble flew through the air was blood curdling (Oh OK, not quite so loud). Everyone in the souvineer shop stopped, looked and to dear Risa's red face, giggled. I wasn't sure whether to comfort her or giggle myself. I opted out for a bit of both. Sorry Risa *shamed face*.

After all that excitement, we went back to the hotel to get ready for the Cirque du Soleil performance called Zumanity.

Ok, more later. Hugs

Cat

Hello Cat,

Thank you, I just love reading all the stories from Vegas, should publish them in a book, I would love to read and reread them all, you had agreat time with Risa, I can tell.

Anna

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Oh Cat, here I go again laughing and crying.

I intend to post my side of the story - you just wait and see. :kisswink:

Love you (TNLW)

Risa

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:claphands: more, more!

Delightful, Cat. I love your style of writing...

feel like I was with you.

And I'm one of the original Trekkies...I even used to frequent Star Trek Conventions...yes, all around the US!

Never did costumes, though! :;): Still love my Spock!

Tribbles...ya coulda warned Risa! Poor risa :hug99: heee, heee, heee! :laugh4:

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:claphands: more, more!

Delightful, Cat. I love your style of writing...

feel like I was with you.

And I'm one of the original Trekkies...I even used to frequent Star Trek Conventions...yes, all around the US!

Never did costumes, though! :;): Still love my Spock!

Tribbles...ya coulda warned Risa! Poor risa :hug99: heee, heee, heee! :laugh4:

Hehe Barb... I used to do Star Trek Conventions too! My BIL ran one in San Jose for years.

Thanks for sharing your story Cat!!!

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OMG all the Trekkies come out of the woodwork. :dance: :licky: Glad to have company there then.

Risa, I look forward to your side of this story. And then it will be my turn to laugh and cry :cunning:

To continue:

Risa and I are now sitting on the monorail heading to the other end of town and the MGM Grand station to find our way to the New York Casino and Zumanity. We were hungry and the show did not start until 7.30pm so it was time to get a good feed. Both of us were a bit sensitive to the constant noise in Vegas, in the lifts, in the lobbies, in the monorail etc. So we found a lovely quiet Chinese restaurant in the New York and sat down for a delicious and quiet dinner. Then at 7.15pm we headed into the theatre.

Well, the pre-show has been underway for some time and here we see what appears to be a good looking but ditzy blond dressed as a 1950's housewife and a man, latino it appears, whom she calls Dickie, and they are both holding pastel coloured dildo's. Hmmmm... did we miss something.

Next thing we know, Dickie produces a banana out of his pocket and walk up to a middle aged well dressed lady in the audience and asks, does she like banana's. He is holding it out in front of himself and you can guess how it was positioned. The lady, brave woman that she is says "Yes". So Dickie peals the damn thing and holding it again in "that" particular position suggests she has a bite. And SHE DOES!!!!. A huge bite. Then Dickie says "Hmmm, she takes a biiiig bite and now looks like a squirrell...... and she swallows too!!!!'

I am sure Risa and I will never look at a banana quite the same way again.

Then the show starts. To say it was erotic is a bit of an understatement. There were several very acrobatic acts. Two were most spectacular. There was a young, dark haired guy who did wonderful things on a hoop that was suspended from the ceiling and moved up to over 10 meters above the floor with him just hanging on with one hand. He was dressed in the most lovely spiderweb that revealed the best butt cheeks I have ever seen..... *droolworthy*. Ok, he had a great act too didn't he Risa.

Through most of the performance all the performers seemed to be on or near the stage. Several times we saw a small person, an young man, well shaped, blond shoulder lengh hair and a beautiful tall blond woman. These two were the best act of the night. She came down from the rafters suspended on a long silk bolt of cloth loop with another length next to it hanging down to the floor. The two of them were very sensual in their acrobatics. I don't think I can explain it but at the end both Risa and I had tears in our eyes because they were sooooo beautiful together.

The show was over far too early (although it was 10pm by the time we got out). Then we sauntered back to the hotel via the monorail as usual. Even though we got back fairly early, we still talked to about 2pm before lights out. And we had to get up early the next morning to catch the bus to the Grand Canyon.

It was a bit difficult opening my eyes when Risa's alarm went off at 5.15 am. Am I kidding... a bit... they were glued together and very uncooperative. Luckily Risa had the foresight to bring along an alarm clock at least. So, up and about, may I say very slowly, to be down in the foyer to meet the bus at 6.05am.

Tom our driver arrived on time and loaded about 8 people in the bus from the Sahara. It turned out he was only shuttling us, via several other hotels, to the larger bus for the trip. On the way to Wal-Mart where we would meet others, he described some of the old legends of Vegas including the ghosts of Bugsy Malone. He had lived in Vegas for some 7 years but he was said he was not a gambler so the city became boring very quickly. I wondered why he stayed until I figured out he was the owner of the bus company we were going with when he began talking to our actual driver, giving instructions etc.

When we got to the larger bus at the Wal-Mart car park, we were introduced to our driver Lauana, a beautiful Hawaiian who looked about 25, long straight dark hair, about 5'5' tall. It turned out that she was in her 40's with a married daughter. And I can tell you it was nature not the scalpel. Lucky woman! *Cat gnashes teeth*

Off we go, a bit late as some of the people booked could obviously not get out of bed on time. The drive out via the Hoover Dam was interesting. I had seen a documentary on the Dam and its construction only a few months ago. So many people died and the conditions were appalling. So seeing the thing myself had quite an impact. It's in a narrow valley and the steep sides above the dam seem to be liberally populated by huge towers carrying electricity cables, a bit hedgehog-like.

The water in the Dam, and Lake Meade, is down 30% for the first time ever. Someone now tell me that there is no such thing as global warming! Here in Canberra we have had a draught for over 7 years and have been on long term water restrictions. And we are 12,000 KMS away. Oh Cat, get off your hobby horse Kiddo, not the place for it. *smacks self upside the head* (if that is possible).

Anyway, the border between Nevada and Arizona was crossed and we headed off into what seemed a flat, dry, scrubby wilderness. Memories of the many westerns I had seen over the years came back vividly. Lauana happily told us about the various cities and towns we passed, gave us an interesting lesson about desert flora and was fun as a driver. Glad too because with 4 stops and 4 hours it could have gotten boring.

However, between the commentary of Lauana, the souvenir shops and the terribly sweet coffee (which I will never buy, or attempt to drink again... blech!) at the rest stops, Risa and I continued our ongoing chats. The whole trip passed quite pleasantly.

I'll continue back home, the people here at work are looking at me strangely. Yes, OK! I know I am strange but I'm not supposed to be doing this.

TTFN

Cat

Edited by Terry's Witch
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Cat! So glad you're filling us in on your entire adventure! I have started to put down my experiences, too, and it seems quite cathartic!

Can't wait to read more. And Risa...I'm waiting breathlessly for your own account!!

(Hmm...Katie ponders what SHE would have done if presented with the banana... :dance: )

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Funnily enough I can't remember what we did after the Grand Canyon. It left such an impression on me and I know I was tired. I do remember Risa and I listened to our portable music on the way home and a no brainer about what we were listening to. Oh can that boy sing!

Wednesday morning arrived and two very tired girls slowly got up and fiddeled around our room. I know I had the computer going and we both caught up on emails and what was happening on the site. Around 10ish Risa wondered if Pam and Dayna had arrived and we called down to the front desk to find out. To our fortune, they had arrived and we called their room and were immediately invited down. Okay, so we had to get dressed first, but that didn't take long after all.

I know I had been looking forward to meeting so many GALS. But, beside Risa and Nancy (Attila Girl) who would arrive on Thursday, Pam (Football Princess) was very very high in the must see and hug category. We found our way down to their room. I don't know if I can write my feeling down except to say it was more than I expected. Pam was just as wonderful, lovely and delightful as I expected and Dayna... much more beautiful than anyone deserves to be (said with no jealousy whatsoever, just with pride of knowing you). The warm welcome took my breath away and it was just the first of many such meetings and greetings to be had on this wonderful day.

Just a little note from a lass so far away. I work in a very testosterone filled environment working with the military. It does not allow for emotion. People are expected to be logical, cold and detached. As many of you know me now, you realise that is not what I am about. I am a very spiritual being. Only yesterday my boss called me "passionate". And this is true and I am proud of it. But in my work over the past year I had moved away from myself to ensure that what I am passionate about, would have some chance of success.

Now here I am suddenly and delightfully right in the middle of being able to be just me, right from the start. I had no trouble with that when I met Risa. We already had a small indication of eachother through telephone conversations. But Dayna and Pam, meeting you that morning was one of the most liberating feeling of my life. And it was just the start. Not much later I met Annette, then Jenni, then Kimberly. You ladies welcomed me as one of "us". It was so inclusive and I so needed it. THANK YOU a thousand times over for that.

The rest of the day was a GALS day with meeting more and more of you. A late lunch at the Caravan Cafe where Bonnie Ann joined us, and then dinner at The Cheescake Factory and the long trip to Caesars Palace. The fountains at the Bellagio which were just fantastic. We instantly became that Fanmily we are all so proud of. I have not felt part of something so worthwhile in a long time. And it was only just the beginning.

So again, this was a wonderful day, full of wonderful women. Please understand you all mean a lot to me. Meeting you will always be a significant event in my life. I believe, life changing. The feelings have not lessened and have followed me into this workplace. People are remarking on how well I look and how happy. They have absolutely no idea and I cannot explain. So again, THANK YOU.

Now my eyes are filled with tears. It is time for me to finish this for today.

Risa, you may have more details. We have discussed often that I am the "helicopter view" of life, the overall meaning stuff. You however, have a wonderful eye for the special detail. So "Over to you Red Leader".

Hugs *Cat sniffs*

Cat

Edited by Terry's Witch
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We found our way down to their room. I don't know if I can write my feeling down except to say it was more than I expected. Pam was just as wonderful, lovely and delightful as I expected and Dayna... much more beautiful than anyone deserves to be (said with no jealousy whatsoever, just with pride of knowing you). The warm welcome took my breath away and it was just the first of many such meetings and greetings to be had on this wonderful day.

Cat

Ok, now you really got me :tissues: OMG!!! And it went by so fast I didn't get to spend enough time with people! Maybe the convention needs to be longer next year??? Either that or we'll all arrive early and leave late and have planned activities with each other. I miss you Cat!
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Thursday was an odd day in that it had a slow start but then was go, go, go. Got a call from Dayna to come and help with the conference bags. She gave us 10 minutes so Risa and I rushed around to get dressed and go and help. Hmmmm, I wonder about Dayna's ability to tell time. However, we did help.

Much of the rest is just as Risa posted. However, she did forget one important, and scary happening. After we finally found Nancy, and I was so glad to finally meet her, we were getting dressed for Thunder Down Under. I was clearing out my pockets and bum bag to repack for the evening. Then....

"Risa, have you seen my credit card. I can't find it and must have put it down." Frantic searching and.... OMG no credit card. Panic,..... more panic on my part. All my money was on the card. What to do.

Then from Risa "When did you last use it?" Me - "At the Black and White Store" Risa "Do you have the receipt, you can call them"

Frantic look for receipt in bum bag. Receipt found and telephone number on there. Call.... ring ring ring.

"Hello, Black and White, may I help you".

First of all I talked too fast, as we Aussies have a tendency to.

Result: They HAD it. They would keep it in the register for me to pick up on Friday.

Cat fell in a big heap. Phew!!!!!

So now I could go out and have a good time. *Cat thinks of herself as dumb blond for several hours and it's true for a while*.

Thunder Down Under was a hoot. And Katie (Songbird) did us all proud by the way. I was sitting on Ben's knee fpr the required photo, and yes he was hot and sweaty too. I actually though he and Michael were the cutest.

G'Day, says I in full Aussie twang. Ahh, says he, big smile from him, An Aussie. Yes, from me. Where from, says he. I say, Canberra. He says a politician (meh, so we are the national capital). No says I, but I work for one. He laughs.

Then we waited for autographs. Suddenly the cutest guy with whom Nancy got her photo taken hears my voice and I hear "Aussie, Aussie, Aussie" and he runs up, bumps hips and we say "Oi, Oi Oi". So, dumb chant but real Australian thing to do. Felt very good.

And yes, very long walk with Jen and her beautiful high heels, all to no avail. When we got back to the Sahara we found out that Dayna, whom we were going to meet, had returned only 15 minutes before us.

And now with Nancy in with us, we talked until, well I though about 3ish but 2.30 will do Risa.

Hugs and more later.

Cat

Edited by Terry's Witch
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:bonk: Cat, I knew I had forgotten something important - didn't know that you had some small talk with the guys ::D:
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Extemporanious extract from diary........

Friday 9 June 2006.

Dear Diary,

We actually slept in till 8am aftern another restless night. Last night, when changing to go out, I realize I have lost my credit card. Panic! But the shops are open until 10PM so I called Black & White. They have my card. Relief!!!.

So now Doris has to go help the other Mods set up in the ballroom and the celebrity suite and Nancy and I hightail it back to the Fashion Mall to pick up the card. Again the long trek through the casinos and by the time we have retrieved the card, found an ATM and returned to the Sahara, it's 3PM. We had a great time though, talking and just getting to know one another better. Love that lass. We find Doris (Risa) in the suite and she is relieved by Barb (becozy), so we go to the "all you can eat" buffet.

Doris and I haven't had much time for food these past few days. Too excited, too many other things to do and GALS to meet. However, before we leave the suite, Jeremy, Gerry's cameraman, arrives to begin filming the documentary on the con. Gerry's idea it appears. How cute. We guess he wants to know about us and why we do this.

Doris and I are the first to be interviewed. Jeremy is about late 20's or 30ish and very tall, cute and delightful. He has watched Gerry sign the posters, dolls and pictures the previous week that a now going up for auction and asks which ones we will bid on. Then the tricky question "What do we like about Gerry". My response is about his acting, how his roles become characters and persons by themselves. It's true, it's what I just love about the man. I don't say that he's "hot" and "gorgeous" as well, that's a given in my book.

Doris agrees, and goes on to tell about how GALS came at a time when she really needed it and Gerry's performance in Phantom gave her the "kick in the arse" she needed to move her life foreward. I was surprised how easy it was for us. Geremy turned to Nancy, but she got flustered a bit, then got going and put in her 10c worth.

Another late lunch with the three of us (Risa, Attilla Girl and TW). The getting dressed for the dinner, talent show and dancing.

I have met so many GALS, Susan, Dawn, Katie, Val, Jody, Jen etc etc. Big hugs, they all know me too. It's quite satisfying and, well..... emotional..... Now I know I did the right thing coming. These women are wonderful and I am so lucky to have this opportunity. So much for all the naysayers back home who thought I was taking a serious risk. Stupid people. They will never know this feeling, it's wonderful and very reaffirming.

The Friday dinner and dance. The food is mediocre, the talent quest great with Bonnie, Katie and Kimberly standing out. The music videos fantastic but Mel (Abrock) will definately win, that lady has talent and she's so sweet. Then we danced till midnight, talked, chatted, hugged, found out about one another and just had fun.

Tired to exhaustion we all went up to the celebrity suite, then to our room and it is still 20m before the lights go off. Tomorrow B&G..... OMG, can't wait.

To be continued.......

Cat

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Saturday, 10 June 2006.

Opening quote from my trip diary: "Dear Diary,...... I just don't know where to start......"

It is now exactly one month since that auspicious day.... G-Day. I still smile everytime I think of that day. A quiet smile to myself for all the things that have inspired me since then, for all the GALS and their friendship, and finally, for that indefinable thing that happened to me, and many of us that day.

It started out as expected. Three tired GALS groaning as Risa's alarm clock went off. Risa has said in her reminisences that now she was running only on adrenaline. I have to say it was what I had been running on for several days already. But as I had been looking forward to B&G from the moment it was published that it would be on, I readily got out of bed, if not bounced as usual *yawn*.

The bus trip was much as Risa outlined, and yes, we were both worried that Nancy would not make the bus. The trip to the theatre was full of anticipation. The wait at the theatre was almost unbearable. Seeing Tonya for the first time was a real delight and I just loved her accent.... so British and so unlike our adorable Gerry :kisswink:

I had suggested to Risa during our telephone discussions before we both left our homes that my little inner voice was telling me that Gerry might come to Vegas. We discussed it and then I said maybe as my inner radar had been very quiet lately, it was just my wishful thinking. But, I had thought that if he came he would come to the movie premier as a "safe" option. We would be in our seats..... well you know.

However, he did not come but I was not in the least upset or unhappy. Beowulf and Grendel bowled me over. I love the many levels of story from the sad king, the put-upon woman who has had such a hard life, the controlling queen, Beowulf's compatriots and then Beowulf himself. All this and add into it the humanity of the so-called Troll Grendel and it is a potent mix of human frailty, fate and pathos. I loved it.

In the bus on the way back to the Sahara, Risa and I could discuss nothing else. We did cry. For the last 5 minutes we were silent. In that silence I was watching Spot recounting some of her adventures with her lovely husband and recounting "pipe" stories. It made me smile and the feeling has lasted Spot.

When we got back to the Sahara, for the first time in the whole week I had been in Vegas, I needed time to myself. I was tired, both physically and emotionally. So after lunch Nancy and Risa went to the celebrity suite and I went back to our room. I took time to email friends and relatives about my new grandson and looked at lovely pictures of him. Then I had a snooze of about 1/2 an hour. I needed my strength to get through the evening.

At 3pm Doris called to say I had to come up to the celebrity suite and so off I went. I had fun talking to all the GALS, called my husband, bid in the silent auction and waited till it was closed. I knew I had won the autographed picture of Gerry from the opening of TR2 - I do still so love Terry S *sigh*. (The photo is sitting here looking at me as I write).

Then back to our rooms to get changed for the ball. Three GALS in one room all trying to get gorgeous. But we did it.

It is 6.40pm and we are heading down to the ballroom when we meet a very flustered and stressed Dayna. We walk to the ballroom with her. Something is in the wind. Cat reminds herself to stay calm. She was wrong this morning, so......

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The music videos fantastic but Mel (Abrock) will definately win, that lady has talent and she's so sweet.

Ah geez, Cat....trying to get me to cry at work, are you?? :tissues:

Can't wait for the rest! You know, this really IS hard to write about...because of what you said here:

I have met so many GALS, Susan, Dawn, Katie, Val, Jody, Jen etc etc. Big hugs, they all know me too. It's quite satisfying and, well..... emotional..... Now I know I did the right thing coming. These women are wonderful and I am so lucky to have this opportunity. So much for all the naysayers back home who thought I was taking a serious risk. Stupid people. They will never know this feeling, it's wonderful and very reaffirming.

It's so so sooooo true...and that's so hard to put into words! But you're doing a FABULOUS job!

~Mel

Oh, one more thing!

It is 6.40pm and we are heading down to the ballroom when we meet a very flustered and stressed Dayna.

I called Dayna at like 6:20, asking if I should bring my laptop again to projects pics on the big screen.....man, was she EVER flustered and stressed! I remember hanging up and thinking, "Poor gal! I hope everything's all right..."

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OMG. What a dunce! I forgot to write about the workshop. Boy, having Gerry on that day kinda threw me.

Abs: I have started on my music video. It's a slow process but coming along. I owe it to you. It was a great workshop. Love and Hugs

Cat

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OMG. What a dunce! I forgot to write about the workshop. Boy, having Gerry on that day kinda threw me.

Abs: I have started on my music video. It's a slow process but coming along. I owe it to you. It was a great workshop. Love and Hugs

Cat

Oh...! No worries, Cat! I didn't even think about that myself. I was living off of nothing but Pepsi that afternoon, it's a blur, lol!

I'm so glad it was helpful to you, I can't WAIT to see your vid! Oh, but on the other hand, I usually take for freakin' ever with my vids, because I tend to get nit-picky...because hey, it's a work with your name on it, right? You want it to be right, right?? Right! (left? :lol: )

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I'm just completely loving reading about your experiences, Cat. I know I'm repeating myself from other posts but you really did inspire me to go. With your decision to travel halfway around the world, I knew I couldn't miss the opportunity. I was talking to a lady the other day from Australia and it gave me a grin to think of you!

Can't wait to read more!

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Well I am so glad I got you lovely ladies to come... even though I didn't know it LOL. It was soooo worth it ....

Abs: My vid will take months. Your'e right, want it to be good.

Will post more in a few hours. Have to get it right.... important bit.

Risa: I'm sure I left heaps out for you to fill in.

Cat

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The Ball.....

I had spent each weekend of the last six weeks before the Con at my sewing machine making my cape and red dress. I even thought about Little Red Riding Hood and being eaten by the wolf when the outfit was finally complete. But my girlfriends liked it so....

Now I am dressed in the whole shebang, cape, dress, sexy red rhinestoned shoes and matching bag, and of course the cat mask. Risa is looking lovely in her bat costume which suits her to a T, and as we emerge from the hotel lifts we run into Dayna who is looking like she is about to have kittens. Hmmmmm......

We arrive at the ballroom, the decorations are absolutely fabulous. I know that these may have set the conference into the red but they are stunning and certainly set the scene. The ballroom is dark with these beautiful red and black displays, the tables fully set look scrumptious.

In we sail, with cape flying and, sigh, I am immediately recognised (aside: I wonder why????). Everyone is looking great, red and black predominate and as more gather, Bethy stands out in the Cleobethra outfit. We (the royal we) talk, we hug, we have a few drinks, we decide where to sit. It is a delightful cacophony of womens voices laughing, giggling, oohing and ahhing. The hugs are plentiful and warm. I am in 7th heaven and a very happy Aussie. If it ended now, I got my monies worth in spades.

Dinner is finally announced and then Dayna announces that Tonya is now here and willing to address the questions we had provided earlier in the week. We did have fun thinking them up I remember. She is delightful and beautiful and I keep wondering why she refers to "getting fired" for saying something and then looking to her left at the rear door to the ballroom. But I am having too much fun to really think about that.... at least for a while.

Now it is time to announce the Butler Awards. I have seen the beautiful silver awards, the intricate GB intertwined in thin silver. So I am very puzzeled at first when Tonya says she need assistance to bring them in because they are heavy. What the F....???? Then, before I have conciously thought about it, the camera is in my hand and, from the very back of the room I am halfway down to the front in 2.2 seconds. I have my gut and what I have heard, the hints and now.....

The shout that goes up as Gerry enters, it is a sound I will remember clearly for a very very long time. Now he comes in behind Tonya, closely followed by Jeremy and his camera. 100 ladies move forward in a wave and as I look at him, Gerry gets on the podium and sees us coming, hesitates and takes a huge step back. We all see it, and .... stop... right where we are. I have never seen anything like it. We just felt his unease and we stopped.... all at once.... all together.

Gerry then takes the microphone and looks at us and we creep closer. Now he is a bit flustered. All I can think of is OMG this man is gorgeous, much better in real life than in any photo I have seen, so healthy and happy looking. Oh, and that smile, the voice, the accent..... Oh.... and the giggle.

It goes through my mind that the next time anyone questions his sexuality I will just laugh.... you can feel it... we all did.... 100+ eostrogen totally covered by 1 testosterone... no worries.

Elsewhere people have noted what he said. I wrote my own notes as well. But the impression overall was of a very cute little boy totally enraptured by what is happening to him, somewhat flustered and entirely honest in his response. Is he a fu*k-up, Oh yes and we are too .... that's why we love you. Is he being treated like a F*#king God, ..... Oh yes, and the problem is.....?????

Then Cheryl (Phantom Rose) from Sydney askes when is he coming to Australia. He looks but can't quite see her. I follow up with "Yes, when" and he looks down, directly into my eyes *sigh*.

I have to break it here to tell you about a conversation I had with Karmic before the con. We were sitting in a restaurant at Southbank on the banks of the Brisbane river one Sunday afternoon. I told her I had registered for the con and she asked if I thought Gerry would be there. I laughed and said I thought so but maybe that was just wishful thinking. The conversation then went on about how we might talk to him. Cheryl said she would joke with him and tease him. I thought I might melt if he so much as looked at me.

Now he is looking at me... and I don't melt. Instead I tease him about his hair in B&G. Felt natural and normal and I could have gone on but he was off on one of his stories and I just clicked my camera and looked on.

My that man is handsome. He leaves such an image on the retina... and in the memory. One that doesn't wear off ... even after more than a month. I suspect it will stay there for much, much longer than that.

Then Gerry listens intently to Tonya as she tells him about the awards he has to give. The hugs for Swan and Abrock were felt by all I think. Then he asks for Bethy and I can hear us all holding our collective breath. That encounter, right in the middle of 100 + people, is emotional and very private. Just as it should be.

All too soon, it is time for him to go. I decided to return to the back of the room, I had been in the front, not by design but by sheer luck. I walked to the back in a daze. I knew there were some hugs going on but I was totally happy and almost in a trance.

The next thing I have my arms around Risa and we are both crying.....

More later

Cat

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