I'm not sure why I'm writing this today. Have second and third thoughts about writing this. Maybe because I've been reading too many of my fellow bloggers posts about meeting Richard, or about whether or not they should meet Richard, or about whether some of us are too old to fangirl over Richard. All of it very interesting thought provoking reading. All of this reading have caused me to think about meeting Richard Armitage a little over a year ago now and about my own feelings about meeting him.
Would I do it all over again? In a New York minute!
I also know I shouldn't really talk about it anymore, should keep it as my private thoughts only, though I confess it was my favorite moment of all last year. Well, one of my favorite moments of many years really, and will be in my memory forever (or until age leads me to forget who I am.) Now with the new Hobbit movie opening and all the excitement and the videos and interviews it's brought it more than ever back in my mind and my emotions.
I could comment on my fellow RA fan blogs I suppose, but believe me, nothing stops a discussion cold in it's tracks faster than a comment from me anywhere on the blogosphere. Twitter demands fewer words and is more and more the place I interact with my fellow RA fans. Not right for everyone, but somehow right for me.
I've so enjoyed reading the stories of all that have met or seen Richard Armitage "in the flesh" from LA, to London, to Berlin to Madrid...did I miss one? I've always so enjoyed reading about fans meeting Richard, from the early days of Robin Hood and even before, way before Thorin, to these past few weeks. Every meeting is special, every one of them, for all of us, we do share in the pleasure and excitement of every fan.
So why am I writing this? I don't really know, I just am, and this is my blog, so I can. Maybe because part of me wants to encourage those who doubt whether they want to meet Armitage the person to do so if they have the opportunity. But I've also been a fan of someone else for 20 years, and I've never met him. You see, I have no issue with fangirling since I've been doing it for a very long time, and I'm older than many fans, older than Richard.
So here I come to the part about my two Richards.
Richard #1: I was more than lucky last year to meet Mr. Armitage and even luckier to engage in a group conversation with him. I like the person, the human being, Richard Armitage very much. My experience of him that night was that he's an unassuming, natural, reserved, funny, sweet, gentle, intelligent, interesting, and interested, man. He's thankfully not someone who "turns on the star quality" when you meet him, he's naturally charming and engaging. He's also a gentleman, and was much so with the three of us there. Our conversation was not long enough for me to even say I know this man, but what little I know, I like very much. Yes, he's a man, a human being, working on his career, being his own person, and living his life, same as the rest of us. This Richard is in a special place in my heart and I care for his well being and success.
Richard #2: The Richard Armitage I deal with most on a daily basis when I'm on the Internet, or visiting fansites, or just daydreaming, or fantasizing, about him, is my "fantasy Richard". This "Richard" is made up of bits and pieces of Lucas North, John Thorton, Thorin Oakenshield, Guy of Gisborne, and photoshoot Armitage. Yes, also a bit of the real "in the flesh" RA as well. My "fantasy Richard" responds to what I want and need him to be at any given time. He's my very private and personal "Richard." Whenever I need consolation, or a bit of good cheer, or a shoulder to cry on, or anything else, he's there. I demand much of him I think, and often have fun making videos or posting about him on my blog and elsewhere. This "Richard" also has a place in my heart, and I'm glad he's in my life. He helped me at a difficult time, and continues to do so.
It was a an emotional moment when the fantasy met the reality just a little over a year ago. But I'm grateful for that moment, and the chance to see him last month at the TH fan event as well. I'm grateful that I shared both moments and had lots of fun with lovely RA friends.
Yes, I miss his messages to his fans, and wonder if we'll ever get another one. I understand why we might not, but will still miss them. (I've only been active in the fandom to experience them "live" since 2009 by the way!)*****
These past two weeks have once again been a treat, and I'm still catching up with all the photos, interviews, videos, and already looking forward to Hobbit film #3.
I know many of us say this, but it's true for me as well. A great bonus of being a fan of Richard Armitage is all my fellow fans, and several I'm also very happy to call friends. They bring joy to my life every day, and for that I'm very grateful to Richard Crispin Armitage.
Tomorrow I go and see The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug and finally I'll see for myself what all the talk, and videos, and reviews are all about!
***** Anyone who wanders why I love this man so much, read this Christmas message from Richard, Dec 19, 2013:
Thank you Annette and Richard Armitage Online for everything you've done for RA fans all these years. You have been an invaluable source for me, and so many other Armitage fans.