Years ago when the newest incarnation of the biggest Region X show of the year became The Region X Championships (TRXC) it was decided that no one person would host or be expected to host, every single year. It is the regions show so everyone should help. With that in mind many people stepped forward offering to host the show. This year it was my friend Marisa Evans turn. Marisa is one of the busiest people I know and several months ago she asked if I could do something small for her (I can't remember what) and I asked if she needed more help. We carpooled from last year's TRXC so had been working on the list of volunteer judges. I offered to help her with anything she needed help with and became the co-host. So I actively started looking for judges for the show, specifically out of region guest judges.
I immediately thought of Jennifer Buxton. She and I have been trading buddys and online friends for many years. Anyone that reads her blog knows at least some stuff about her and her life so I knew she was an experienced judge and would be a wonderful judge for both halter and performance (the qualities that make for a good stakes judge) and I emailed her to see if she was interested and could fit a weekend trip to New York into her schedule.
She said yes.
I was as excited as a little kid at Christmas because not only did we now have two amazing guest judges (Eleanor Harvey was returning this year and is always very welcome and appreciated) but I would actually get to meet
Jennifer. I got on Google chat and told Marisa right away (how else do you talk when someone is at work?), I told my daughter Elecktra. I am sure I told my husband. Marisa and I decided to keep Jennifer a secret for as long as we could because I knew we couldn't be the only ones that would be excited she was coming.
So the time went by and we finished plans for TRXC and then it was just time to finish getting dolls ready since I always have my big TRXC weekend sale every year. Friday came and I had a full day of making sure the house was clean, last minute errands and waiting for Elecktra to get home from school so we could head out. We finally got to Albany, did some hall set-up, went to dinner and when I came back I got to meet Jennifer finally. And from the first moment it was like I had known her forever. I love it when that happens. We have a lot in common but enough differences to keep things from getting boring. I heard stories about her kids (I NEED to meet them!) and I told stories about mine. We shared dog stories and stories upon stories. It was a wonderful weekend and I was sad that it had to end. I wanted to get home to my guys (Ethan and Travis stayed home) but Jennifer lives so far and I have never left New England. But I might just have to find a way to make that happen. Hopefully soon.
I have never had any awe of Jennifer, I am in awe of her tack, I can't begin to make anything as beautiful and realistic, but she has always been a person I wanted to meet. I am very glad that got to happen and hope that she can come out and judge at TRXC again in the future.