I squealed as they gave me a special wristband that would let me back in the store later that night for the meet and greet. There were only 100 wristbands, and I was the second-to-last person to get one. I learned later that fans had actually camped out the night before to be the first in line. I had simply walked in at 6 p.m. – I couldn’t ignore that the feeling I’d had before had been right. It was fate at its finest!
I did a little more FNO’ing in Soho before heading back to Sephora at 8:45 to join the other 99 excited Gwenabees. After waiting for 2 hours in line, Gwen finally arrived, wearing a gorgeous dress from her new L.A.M.B. collection. She’s just as beautiful and toned in real life, and her red-lipped smile lit up the whole room. My camera was working overtime trying to capture every glorious minute.
After popping in Sephora’s window with her Harajuku girls to wave to the massive crowd that had formed outside, Gwen sat down at a table and began to greet us one by one and sign our bottles of her perfume. We were instructed that she wouldn’t be signing anything personal, she wouldn’t be accepting any gifts, and she wouldn’t be taking any photos with fans. Bullsh*t.
As I moved up in line, I saw her signing people’s L.A.M.B. bags and other No Doubt memorabilia. I saw her spending time with each person, smiling and laughing – Gwen’s no Mariah or J. Lo, and I wasn’t going to give up on trying to give her my article.
The moment it was my turn to meet her is one I’ll remember forever. It went like this:
Me (with my hand to my heart): Gwen, it is such an honor to meet you. I am the biggest fan.
Gwen: Aw, thank you, that’s so sweet. It’s so nice to meet you! What’s this? (She points to my article that I’ve placed on the table.)
Me: I’m a writer. I write about you all the time and this is a piece I wrote for you.
Gwen: That is so cool. I’m definitely going to read it. Thank you. (She takes the article and places it in her lap. Then, she signs my perfume box.)
Me: Thank you so much! This was like a dream come true! It’s been my dream to meet you and you’re such an inspiration.
Gwen: Thank you so much! It was so nice to meet you and thanks so much for coming out today and waiting for me here. I really appreciate it.
Yes, I was totally gushing, but it’s hard to come up with something to say when you’re talking to someone who’s been so important to you and yet, you know you only have seconds with them. Camera crews interviewed me after my meet and greet, but I couldn’t tell you what I said: I was a mushy, gushy mess. Sensory overload. All I know is that I said meeting her was everything I had hoped it would be and more.