I am just back from Maine where I was fortunate to be able to travel to Kennebunkport for the launch of I Call Him Mr. President by Ken Raynor and Michael Patrick Shiels and want to share the weekend with all of you.
You’ve all heard the saying “it’s a small world”. Well it IS a small world indeed.
I was hoping that the whole family could make the trip to Maine, but unfortunately my husband Matt had a conference in town that he needed to attend so was unable to make the trip. Needless to say I was disappointed, but happy that I would have my able assistant/daughter to accompany me.
And as disappointed as I was that Matt wouldn’t be joining us, there was a reason he stayed in town and attended that conference. The guest speaker was a man by the name of Bryan Dodge. Bryan is a motivational speaker specializing in personal and professional development and best selling author. And he is from Texas. This is where the ‘small world’ comes in. Had he not been at the conference on Friday, he would have been at the Presidential Library in Houston for another book launch. So Matt began talking to him and told him about the book and the launch I was headed to in Kennebunkport. Bryan is friends of the Bush family and had heard about the book, wanted to read it, and wanted to know all about my connection to it. As luck would have it our flights were leaving town later that afternoon around the same time. Matt texted me his picture and I scoped out the airport looking for Bryan — not that hard to do in South Bend, Indiana (a small regional airport). I did find him and we had a nice chat about the book. He asked if he could buy a copy from me, but I told him I’d do better than that – I would get him a signed copy from the launch and send it on to him in Texas. He said would gladly promote the book in any way he could. What a start to my weekend!!
We arrived in Portland, Maine late Friday evening and drove on to Kport. I couldn’t wait to get to The Captain Jefferds Inn where we were staying. The Inn is an old historic sea captain’s home built in 1804 which has been turned into a Bed & Breakfast. And I do love historic homes, so this was a perfect fit!
Saturday afternoon it was time for the book launch at the Vinegar Hill Music Theatre in nearby Arundel. The first part of the launch took place in a lovely tent outdoors where we had a variety of appetizers, including Maine lobster rolls and cocktails. Ken and Michael signed books – LOTS and LOTS of books! – for over an hour, while I had the chance to reconnect with some of the people I had met when I visited in June. There was a huge turnout for the event and we sold out of books! Always a good thing.
Then it was time to make our way into the theatre, an old converted barn, as in not any old barn, more of a Ritz Carlton style barn – to listen to Ken tell stories from the book. And what an honor it was to see President George HW Bush and Barbara Bush come out to join us and show their support!
There was a special message via video from Jim Nantz who wanted to be there, but was unable to attend. Ken shared many stories about his time spent with the President on the golf course and out fishing on Fidelity, the President’s boat. Others in the audience shared stories of their friendship with the Bush family and just how gracious, kind and generous these two individuals are. It was so apparent the love and admiration the people of Kennebunkport and beyond have for President and Mrs. Bush. And the feelings are mutual.
I am truly honored to be a part of this book and to know such amazing gentlemen – Ken Raynor and Michael Patrick Shiels who I consider dear friends. I know it’s going to be a huge success.
I hope everyone has the chance to read this book. The stories will make you laugh and some will bring tears to your eyes, but I can assure you, you won’t soon forget the beautiful stories of life lessons gained from a friendship born outdoors that has continued to develop over decades during rounds of golf, in the Bush family home on nearby Walker’s Point, international fishing trips, retreats at Camp David, flying in Marine One, and many other unforgettable experiences.
To get your copy please click on the link here: I CALL HIM MR. PRESIDENT