Last night, I joined my first Cherries in Winter book group discussion with The Beach Babes of Akron, Ohio (not Baltimore, as previously reported–my bad). Due to the high cost of travel and my low level of glamor, I wasn’t able to be there in person, so the Babes and I did the next best thing: We video-called each other on Skype.

I know, I’m having my own little Oprah moment similar to when she did a whole show on that crazy, newfangled Twitter thing. I’m a little behind with Skype, as was evidenced by the hour or so it took me to figure out how to do it. Even my Dad was like, “You don’t have Skype yet? I’ve been Skype-ing with your brother for months now!” I know I need to do some major catching up when my father is more geek-savvy than I am. Then again, Dad’s no dope, and I’m so tech-know anemic I could be Amish. I think I’d look great in one of those bonnets.

This could be me! Then I'd work in Reading Terminal Market and eat apple dumplings for lunch every day.

The point is that I had a great time with the Beach Babes, and not just because they were talking about my book. It was so cool to “be” there with them as they described the dinner they’d had, a chicken meatloaf adapted from Mom’s Meatloaf recipe in the book. We talked about where we lived, the idea of instilling financial responsibility in kids from an early age, the difference between thinking one deserves something and the good feeling of earning it… You know, life.

So, thanks to a slightly vexing but ultimately cool online video calling site, I got to spend an hour with a group of awesome women in another part of the country. Many thanks to Lory and the rest of the Beach Babes for asking me to join in their discussion of Cherries in Winter and for reading it in the first place, and to Skype for making it possible. (That’s just props, not a plug.)

If you have a book group that’s reading Cherries in Winter, I’d be happy to Skype my way in to your discussion. But only if you want me to.