Canadian Book Tour: Part 2

Public humiliation has never been something I’ve consciously sought out, but you have to be prepared for a certain amount if you’re putting yourself out there as a speaker, writer, or say, Chapters bookstore greeter.

Luckily, that didn’t happen to me this time around. While I arrived in the Thunder Bay Chapters parking lot with butterflies the size of condors in my belly, I doused them with a good dose of Starbucks coffee and did my superman routine once again. Slapping on some warpaint (i.e. makeup) and a jacket does wonders for one’s self-confidence!

I did just about scare one shopper out of his skin, though. When I first walked in, I was so overcome with excitement at the sight of a pile of my books on “my” table that I exclaimed loudly to the man reading the blurb on the back cover – “that’s my book!” He looked visibly startled and sort of backed away. Note to self: tone it down a bit…

Over the next few hours, at least a dozen people stopped by to chat, including former Laurentian pilots Bill Howe and Ron Kyle (who brought along his 1970’s era LAS baseball hat). In fact, it turned into a bit of a reunion at my table as Bill and Ron ran into former air traffic controllers, pilots, and other folks they knew. Bush pilot Phil Mostow’s son happened to be in the store and he joined the conversation too. It sure is a small world!

At 5pm Doug and I rushed off to grab some dinner and go to a grocery store to pick up supplies for our evening engagement at the Thunder Bay Historical Museum. After quickly walking Riker (our dog), we started setting things up in the museum. Intially, Dr. Tory Tronrud, the director of the museum, had us in the main room with rows of seating and an intimidating dinosaur skeleton in the back. I made the decision to move to the room next door, which was more intimate, had lots of natural light, and was set up for refreshments. A couple of people involved in the Northern Ontario Aviation Heritage Centre came by to chat – Denise Lyzun and David Kemp – and Dean Mostow and Bill Howe joined us for a continuation of our earlier chat.

It was a very enjoyable evening, but we were definitely ready to check into the hotel come 9:15pm. Unfortunately, Riker was a little wound up and every time someone walked by the room, woke us up with one of his guard dog woofs. Needless to say, it was rough getting up the next morning for the 9-hour drive to Winnipeg….

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