Have you ever had a day where everything started on the wrong foot from the very beginning? Today was one of those days for me- it all started when my iPhone failed me and didn’t set my alarm clock off at the proper time. As a result, I overslept 1.5 hours, got stuck in an hour of traffic to get to my engineering job, and then an avalanche of catastrophes occurred throughout the day. In between all of this, the editor of The Armenian Weekly, Khatchig Mouradian, sends me a message to let me know that he will be in Burbank, California for Chris Bohjalian‘s book launch of The Sandcastle Girls. A few weeks ago, The Armenian Weekly wrote a wonderful article about my bakery! I was introduced to Chris Bohjalian after he tweeted the article on twitter. He joked around that he would love to taste some of my goodies the next time he was in Los Angeles!
Needless to say, regardless of my bad day, I had to go out and meet these two wonderful men! As a thank you to both, I prepared a half dozen of my chocolate Oreo cookies (which might I add, are one of my biggest hits), and went to the book launch! Chris is a very powerful and eloquent speaker, and a great seller of his own work I had planned on buying the book in a supportive effort, but had I not planned on it, his speech would’ve compelled me to go out and buy it! The way he lovingly spoke of his characters, and the raw emotion he poured into his words really made one want to read this story that took him 18 months to piece together!
Needless to say, I bought the book, and stood in a very, very long line to get it signed by him. When his assistant approached me, she asked how I wanted him to sign my book. I said “Shakar Bakery.” She then saw me holding his cookies and said “this is a very nice gift for him.” Khatchig was socializing in the distance, and I noticed he was down to 2 Oreo cookies by this point (which was maybe 10 minutes after I handed him his bag). When I finally got to Chris, Khatchig told me he wanted to introduce me. He told Chris “do you remember when I wrote the article in the Armenian Weekly about Shakar Bakery?” At this point, Chris hadn’t noticed me, but I did notice his eyes light up before responding “yes, yes of course!” Khatchig then turned to me and said “This is Shantal, the owner of Shakar Bakery.” Chris was still seated at this point, and I dangled the bag of chocolate oreos in front of him and said ” I remembered you would be here, and I brought you a gift!” He jumped out of his seat, like a child would jump out of bed Christmas morning, reached across the table,gave me a huge hug and said “thank you, thank you!” I then told him “you can’t wait to eat my cookies, I can’t wait to read your book!” His reply was “I got the better end of the bargain!”
His reaction made my night! Best part was that people were staring at me thinking “who is this girl?” Mind you, Chris is a N.Y Best Selling Author!! A couple of them actually approached me to ask more about my bakery. One girl asked “why are so many people walking around with cookies?” I said, “No, not so many people- these were only for Khatchig and Chris because they’re wonderful!”