Practice Run

 

2007 ASPCA Henry Bergh Award Winners

2007 ASPCA Henry Bergh Award Winners

It’s been a week now since Hanni and I attended the cocktail reception in California to accept our ASPCA/Henry Bergh Children’s Book Award, and we’re both still walking on air. Finally this morning I’m coming down long enough to sit in front of my talking computer and compose a blog post about the big event. Eight writers won the Henry Bergh Award this year, some for fiction, others for non-fiction, poetry, young adult books, and so on. Two illustrators were also recognized with awards.

I was so excited to get to the reception that we arrived early — the room was pretty darn empty when we got there. Our early arrival turned out to be a good thing – it gave Hanni and me a chance to practice getting from our table up to the stage. You know, so we’d be ready when they announced our award! For the first dry run I let go of Hanni’s harness – I held on to her leash as someone guided us and pointed out where the three steps to the stage were. At the foot of the steps, I crouched down next to Hanni and pet her and rubbed her and told her over and over what a good girl she is. When I stood up, I put my foot on the first step. Tapping my foot then, and pointing to the step, I exclaimed, “Good girl, Hanni! Here’s where we want to go. Good girl!” We were led back to our table. I sat down, then helped Hanni situate herself underneath. After that, I pretended our names had just been announced. I pulled out my chair and called Hanni to come out. She did. Standing up, I lined my back against the back of the chair and commanded, “Forward!” Hanni led me right to the stairs. She was perfect.

She is perfect!

 

Joe Pentangelo, me, and Hanni

Joe Pentangelo, me, and Hanni

We tried it a few more times – the practice was more for me than for Hanni – until I felt fairly sure we’d make it without me falling. Or fainting. My Blue Marlin publisher Francine Rich arrived with her husband Jude around that time – they presented me with lilies. The fragrance was sensational. I felt like a star. The whole event was first class, fancy hors d’oeuvres, fancy drinks, fancy people. I even had a police escort! Joe Pentangelo, Special Agent for Humane Law Enforcement at the ASPCA — and one of the stars of the Animal Precinct TV show on Animal Planet — met Hanni and me at the stage and walked us to the podium to receive our award. Find out if we made it without tripping — or fainting! — by reading my next blog post, called Winners!!!

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4 Responses to “Practice Run”


  1. 1 Laurie July 7, 2008 at 1:06 pm

    Here I go getting all misty-eyed again…
    How neat to have met Special Agent Joe Pentangelo! Can’t wait to hear more!

  2. 2 MaryEllen July 7, 2008 at 2:58 pm

    Congratulations, Beth, on your well-deserved award. The students in Ms. Gaffney’s class all agreed that you and Hanni were the best guest readers ever.

    Thanks so much for all you do!

  3. 3 Beth July 7, 2008 at 6:25 pm

    Laurie, you may not be as misty-eyed about Hanni after reading how naughty she was in my next post, “Winners!”
    And speaking of , Mary Ellen, I think all those students in Mrs. Gaffney’s class are winners. Mrs. Gaffney, too!


  1. 1 Winners!!! « Safe & Sound blog Trackback on July 7, 2008 at 3:07 pm

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