Thursday, October 25, 2012

Friends and Followers: Who ARE These People?

In Real Life. It’s a bonus attribute in a friendship nowadays. There are folks I know that I feel comfortable with and have conversed with for years, yet I haven’t met them. 

You probably have some too. Some may progress from social networking with you to the telephone. In my experiences, this doesn’t occur all that often but it’s delightful when it does. A common interest usually jump starts it; it’s been both business-related and personal for me.

I’m just back from a vacation where I traveled a few thousand miles from home. I did keep up with social media so you didn’t even notice I was on the move, and I’m thrilled to say that I had the pleasure of meeting several friends for the first time! Note: Some names are changed.

Lunch with Janice was quick and too short. She looked like her pictures and her personality was just as she projects it via social media. Have known her three or four years; initially meeting on a health-related social network. From there we branched out to Twitter, then Facebook, and we support each other’s blogs. Janices’s choice of restaurant turned out to be exotic and delicious!

From Ally's Garden
Next stop was Ally who lives in the same area as Janice. Ally is the real deal. She’s as funny and bright as she is on Facebook, where I met her several months ago after having a lengthy conversation on a mutual friend’s wall. Highly creative, her design savvy was reflected inside and outside of the charming home she lives in. Her dog growled and wouldn’t come close but he sure looked cute! 

A groovy place to have coffee!
Two days later, I met Vivian. She is also a creative type, a fine artist. She and I met on Twitter several years ago. She expressed reservations about meeting me; apparently, this was a new concept to her. On the phone prior to our meeting she asked “Is this really okay to do?” I assured her that I do not bite. At a very tasty flatbread pizza restaurant, then later for coffee elsewhere we talked about lots of cool stuff, including how our friendship started on Twitter and how I came to her defense when someone tweeted blunt criticism about her art.  

Pretty kitty!
And last but not least is Paul. I met Paul when I shouted out for guest bloggers for my Groovy Reflections blog. Paul stepped up and hasn’t stopped writing since. He then became my first admin for the Groovy Reflections Facebook page. And he is still doing just that as well as many other duties for Groovy Reflections. I was honored to stay in his home for two days and meet the Mrs. and the cat (both are my friends on Facebook too).  

I also visited with relatives too during my travels, however, I'm certain you don’t want to hear about that!

The point is: The definition of friendship has perhaps evolved a bit. Friendships can be carried out in a non-physical fashion. I’ve actually struggled with this thought for a few years, but have come to the understanding that friendship is virtually embraceable.

Is this going to put less of a priority on physically meeting people? No.

Looking forward to meeting many more of you in the future!

Elton John sang "If your friends are there, then everything's allright." in this beautiful ballad from early in his career. And if you are feeling friendly, stop by the website, or our TwitterFacebook, or Google+accounts and say hello.


Shannon Grissom said...

Ahhh this post made me smile. I've made some great connections in the virtual world. Looking forward to meeting you in person some day Gerry!

Gerry Wendel said...


Canadian Dad said...

Hi Gerry! Just this past weekend, I was fortunate enough to travel to my first blogging conference. I was able to meet so many of the wonderful people I interact with on a daily basis and it was definitely an eye opening experience. Most of the people were exactly how you would imagine them, with only a few surprises.

I was a little worried about what others would think of me and vice versa, but the whole thing was amazing and I think I even have some new "real friends" out of it!