I'm not going to say that we met up "in real life" because online relationships are real too. Charles Stross in Halting State uses the phrase MonkeySpace for the place where we can see each other and hear each other and when we hug it's tee shirt to cardigan and not simply a kind thought.
It was wonderful to hear Whirl's amazing voice. He really does sound that good all the time! Polenth entertained us with tales of a pet cockroach, Robin made sure we got the best table in the place even though it meant moving three times, and Jane kept us laughing. My Beloved (Neil) and Robin's husband (John) performed essential support and paparazzi roles.
Polenth, Gina (me)
I had to leave early as usual (stupid CFS). I thought Jane was telling me she was legless when she said she couldn't stand up but she was simply wedged between the bench and the table. I can't guarantee no one was legless by the end of the day.
Those of you who couldn't make it: we missed you. Maybe another time?
Edited to add:
Whirl's hysterical account of the event is here.
Jane's more accurate recounting is here.
Evil Editor has posted another photo here.
And Robin has a photo here.