It's an interesting semi-trend (if you can call two similar-ish occurrences a trend) that the girls in my family seem to be following: get into a solid long-term relationship and move to Denver (or thereabouts). Littlesis got married and took off for the Rockies for my new brother-in-law's job; Babysis got engaged and followed her fiancée in the same direction. I haven't yet felt a hint of inclination to follow their path, but it is beginning to feel a little fateful. At the very least, it's a hell of a place to visit, as the excursion to the mountains proved. And when you get us all in one place, our powers combine to make the local area at least 15% prettier and about 37% more sassy.


Fun fact: no one pictured above is wearing their own dress, because that's another wonderful bonus of being around your sisters.

After a few wonderful days of long-overdue sororal love (which for us means trying on everyone else's clothes and complimenting and mocking each other by turns), the day of the event for which Biff and I had ostensibly made the trek in the first place arrived.

Before I ever started working with Asym two years ago, I was already a voracious fan of Colin, Joshua, and Ryan's respective bodies of work. The Minimalists' blog walked me through the process of reorganising my priorities, although I've been significantly slower than they were to actually ditch the majority of my possessions; Iceland India Interstate and How To Travel Full-Time helped me to be more comfortable with the difference between the standard, expected options for relationships and lifestyle and my own developing views and preferences. I hadn't read any of Fiction's work before, but after helping with Shapes the Sunlight Takes as my first major editing project -- which I loved enough to entirely divert my life from its previously projected path -- I was sold. So the chance to finally meet (most of -- Joshua was absent) these people in person was immense -- each one of them is not only on the list of favorite authors but has had a significant impact on the way I've chosen to direct my life. I was massively excited and more than a little nervous.

these dudes are great

And then when they all turned out to be just as spectacular in the flesh over a beer as they had seemed from their words, I just about melted from happiness.

I did not take many pictures that night, and most of them were blurry and dark. Here are the few that managed to be halfway decent.

colin talking with his hands

Colin is a wonderfully animated speaker and was very difficult to photograph because of that.

colin and sean

Colin and Biff.

birdie is way too excited

This is about as excited as I felt the whole night. Note Pasha lying on the table in front of us.

the gang's all here

The whole crew: Colin, Skye Steele, Fiction, Ryan, Biff, and moi.

This, boys and girls, is where Birdie learns the value of journalling about experiences right away. Now that a couple of months have passed since that night and I'm still catching up on all my adventures, I cannot completely relate all the wonderfulness that made up the night. I know we all talked and talked, about physics and habits and travels and the fact that I seemed much nicer in person than through the veil of the red pen, but the specifics have begun to fade and blur together into the sheer overflowing bliss that, I am finally beginning to realise, shows up whenever I spend a good long time immersed in connection with brilliant minds.

This is part of a larger and slower realisation that's been coming at me like a thunderstorm seen from the top of a mountain.

More adventures to come.