After all, no reading actually occurred. They were just getting ready to introduce the author when it was suddenly announced that someone thought they smelled gas in the building and we had to evacuate until the gas company could come in and verify. We all then went outside.
Actually, the initial rumor was that they were worried about a sulfur leak. This was a miscommunication, more that someone thought they smelled sulfur and worried about a possible gas leak, but this is what we heard and we started wondering why sulfur would have been piped into the building anyway. Natural gas pipes are normal, sulfur not so much in a retail book operation.
Regardless, it was a possible gas leak they were worried about and they cleared the building quickly until the gas company could check it out. That took a long time for the gas company to be sure, and it was luckily that it was pretty warm outside. No gas leak of course. The building had been perfectly safe, but they didn’t want to take any chances. Better safe than sorry.
The author handled it well. She stood and chatted with all the people who had come to see her outside, waiting to see if the reading could go on or not, signing books. The event had to be postponed, though. By the time the building was verified as safe, it was too late to start. They still had to close at nine as normal, and it was about ten after eight.
It will be rescheduled…but did I go to a reading this month or not? I was at the reading, only no reading actually happened. I got to chat with the author, and get my book signed. Not sure if I should mark this down as qualifying for the one reading a month I try to hit or not.