Book Launch Party in Switzerland

avid party goers enjoying a glass of champagne at book launch

avid party goers enjoying a glass of champagne at book launch

My book launch party was a huge success even though it was too cold and cloudy to sit at our new outdoor table and enjoy our  backyard view of the Alps and Mont Blanc.

We fooled Mother Nature, moved the patio furniture inside, held the party anyway and still had fun.

My friends were an eclectic mix of friends from around the globe : American, British, Canadian, Cameroonian, Croatian, French, German, Irish, Indian, Polish, Spanish, Swiss, Swedish, Somali, South-African, Zimbabwean and  even one Wisconsinite.

with German friend Maria & Somali husband Mohamed

with German friend Maria & Somali husband Mohamed

When I explained why I was compelled to write the book, my friends wondered,

What argument did authorities use to ban women’s participation in sports? »

“The physical education association, backed by medical authorities, forbade competitive sport for girls, because they believed that rigorous exercise would be too strenuous for their hearts” I explained. “They feared it could interfere with a woman’s ability to bear children.”

“How could a country that had the scientific knowledge to drop an atomic bomb and put a man on the moon believe such nonsense?”

My European friends were astounded.

In retrospect, it sounds preposterous. Their incredulous reaction reaffirmed my reasons for telling my story. I wanted to record the voice of the silent generation, who fought for the equal rights in education and sport, opportunities which thankfully women today can take for granted. My book, Home Sweet Hardwood, A Title IX Trailblazer Breaks Barriers Through Basketball is important because, despite many victories, the struggle for gender and racial equality continues.

Our doorbell rang non-stop and my little abode filled with chocolates, champagne, and wine in an outpouring of congratulations. Every spare table and counter space was covered with bouquets of roses, lilies, and peonies every color of the rainbow.

a great team celebrates

a great team celebrates

My techie husband, who orchestrated the whole event, including cooking tasty treats, and posted our website on TV with snapshots of my past.

Champagne flowed; the house rang with laughter and cheerful chatter.

The moment was made more poignant because I also shared the evening with my son. We topped off the night with a toast among his friends in celebration of his college graduation.

What touched me the most was knowing that even though most of the people at my party had no interest in basketball, they bought the book anyway, intrigued by my story and as a sign of solidarity.

author dedicating her book

author dedicating her book

I tumbled into bed after midnight, overwhelmed with gratitude for the outpouring of support of my long held dream.

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42 Comments

    • Thanks, Lynne. I really appreciate this especially coming from a fellow writer because you know firsthand how daunting this whole process can be.

  1. I was with you in spirit fellow writer xx you look well, and so happy. We still fight those gender issues every day – one of the reasons I left my last uni as you know. Trouble is, they continue to deny their unconscious sexism in such patriarchal institutions… Their behaviour is the ‘norm’ and we women are the difficult ones with baggage apparently… Long may we women stand up and be counted… By the way, if we were the weaker sex, why did we end up being the sex who gave birth?? Surely that was the wrong way round? Love to you and yours… Rach xx

    • Oh yes, Rachael, part of the problem is that it is “unconscious” sexism and racism. Sometimes discrimination can be so hard to believe exists until you are on the receiving end of it. That said, thankfully, there are many good men who are aware and treat women equally. Hopefully you will reserve the respect you deserve in your new workplace in Australia. Miss you.

      • I agree. I was talking about patriarchal institutions and their behaviour NOT all men… X

  2. Thank you for sharing in your well-deserved celebration., Pat! HOME SWEET HARDWOOD is a gift –a great story with an inspirational message for anyone who has ever had to overcome a barrier. May your message keep traveling far and wide. Blessings and Hugs from across the pond. 🙂

  3. Thank you for sharing in your well-deserved celebration., Pat! HOME SWEET HARDWOOD is a gift –a great story with an inspirational message for anyone who has ever had to overcome a barrier. May your message keep traveling far and wide. Blessings and Hugs from across the pond. 🙂

  4. Congratulations, Pat, on a job well done! I can almost feel the love and support that filled your celebration.

  5. A very hearty congratulations, Pat for seeing this valuable project through to completion and for getting it into Kindle format as well. This is a monumental task – certainly not for the weak of heart. Your passion and fighting spirit really come through in the pages of your book – a real inspiration for all women.

  6. A very hearty congratulations, Pat for seeing this valuable project through to completion and for getting it into Kindle format as well. This is a monumental task – certainly not for the weak of heart. Your passion and fighting spirit really come through in the pages of your book – a real inspiration for all women.

  7. Enjoyed sharing in your celebration via your blog post. It appears you were well celebrated and that your book well received. Congratulations!

  8. Enjoyed sharing in your celebration via your blog post. It appears you were well celebrated and that your book well received. Congratulations!

  9. Wish I could have been there to help you celebrate and am glad you enjoyed the fest. Three of the Gretler – Lindbergs have enjoyed the book so far with the rest of them reading in the coming weeks. Have told all I encounter about the great read!

  10. Pat, I am so happy that your book launch in Switzerland was such a success. I knew your friends and colleagues would turn out to support you! Book by book and page by page, you are touching lives and encouraging dreams with your gift. I am so proud of you!

  11. Pat, you’re an inspiration, not only because you survived (and thrived!) through such craziness — banning girls from competitive sports for fear they wouldn’t be able to bear children?? — but also because you’ve got a new title. AUTHOR!! How fabulous! And what a splendid party/celebration you had. Wish I could’ve been there!

    • Thanks, Debbie, who knows we may meet up one time in the Midwest unless you get back over the Big Pond anytime soon although that seems doubtful after your last misadventure abroad.

  12. Pat, you’re an inspiration, not only because you survived (and thrived!) through such craziness — banning girls from competitive sports for fear they wouldn’t be able to bear children?? — but also because you’ve got a new title. AUTHOR!! How fabulous! And what a splendid party/celebration you had. Wish I could’ve been there!

    • Thanks, Debbie, who knows we may meet up one time in the Midwest unless you get back over the Big Pond anytime soon although that seems doubtful after your last misadventure abroad.

  13. Hey Pat, congratulations on the party! You deserve all of it!
    But more important congratulations on your work!
    Reading your book brought back so many memories…. so much fun and of course also tears.
    Among other things your writing also opens eyes and broadens the horizon for a different perspective on life in Europe and women’s basketball in Europe. Thank you so much!!
    Bette

    • Thanks, Bette. This means so much to me coming from you because you were my dear teammate in Marburg. Your feedback affirmed that special time of my life. Even though I don’t see you as often as I would like, I have treasured your friendship over the years.

  14. Hey Pat, congratulations on the party! You deserve all of it!
    But more important congratulations on your work!
    Reading your book brought back so many memories…. so much fun and of course also tears.
    Among other things your writing also opens eyes and broadens the horizon for a different perspective on life in Europe and women’s basketball in Europe. Thank you so much!!
    Bette

  15. Wonderful to see your success and all the people who showed up. Would have loved to have been there. Started reading your memoir and can relate to what your European friends are saying.

    • Thanks Sonia. I appreciate your support. One of these trips over, you must come to Switzerland, so we can share that glass of champagne. Gutsy gals have so much to celebrate!

  16. Congratulations on a successful event! Looking forward to seeing the author in person……SOON

  17. Congratulations on a successful event! Looking forward to seeing the author in person……SOON

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