I’m not the type to simply “bump” into celebrities. Obviously I don’t hang out at the right clubs, shop at the right supermarkets or eat at the right restaurants. So my close encounter had to be organized and planned.
And, no, I’m not a stalker. Why would you think that? I’m just someone who attended the Avalon convention in 2006 with the aim of meeting two of her favorite Stargate actors, Richard Dean Anderson and Amanda Tapping.
Avalon was Anderson’s first convention in a long while – there were jokes about virginity throughout – while Tapping, on the other hand, was (and is) a con veteran, having attended many of the larger conventions, and her own UK-based conventions run by the GABIT organization. [Fundraising conventions featuring Tapping that have raised hundreds of thousands of pounds since their inception in 2005 – Ed.]
Picture the scene: rural Wales, a beautiful old town, and Bishop’s Palace with moat, complete with swans.
The convention was small and well-run by GABIT. While the day began with a very fun Q&A session, the “close encounters” really kicked off in the coffee session where the two stars sat right beside us. Up close, they are just incredibly good-looking. Richard Dean Anderson has that certain charisma that just made me dissolve into a puddle, especially when he winked at me (and he did wink at me, honestly!). Luckily my friend managed to ask a question; I don’t remember the answer as I was too busy being goo.
At the photo session later, I pulled myself together enough to have something of a conversation with Amanda Tapping. Namely at how exhausted I was and how exhausted she must be. The photo itself meant that I was happily sandwiched between the two stars for a good couple of minutes until there was a photo we were happy with.
Later, at the charity auction, having bought a picture of Anderson, I also received a wonderful hug from Tapping as a thank-you. My friend later claimed that I bid not for the picture but for the hug. She may have had a point.
Sometimes you hear horror stories of how people meet their heroes and they turn out to be awful, but I have to say, both Anderson and Tapping were incredibly charming and lovely, and absolutely made the experience worthwhile. And I fully intend on “bumping” into them again. (Still not stalking, I swear!)