Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Meeting a Sojourner

Nearly three weeks ago, I saw that a fellow blogger that I have followed since 2005 or thereabouts, was in St. Louis, not to far from where I live. A few days later he posted that he was in Iowa City, close enough for rural southeast Iowa to be considered my backyard though it is about an hour and a half drive from my home. So I sent a shout out via Facebook and eventually we agreed to meet at a small Mexican restaurant between where he was staying and where I lived. As I drove towards our meeting place, I wasn't quite sure what I would say or how meeting someone I have known for 13 years but have never met in person would be like.

With the exception of one person who got me started in blogging and used to read my blog, I have mostly remained anonymous with my blog. I guess I just like it that way. In the beginning, it was because it allowed me the freedom to say some things that others that knew me might not like to hear. Then I got married and had children and it became partly about just protecting them from things that I have said. These days it is mostly just habit that I still loosely keep my blogging identity anonymous, even though many of my readers know my real identity through other social media platforms.

It turned out I had a lot in common with Sage as he used to refer to himself. He has a southern accent and drinks unsweetened tea. I don't have a southern accent and drink diet colas. He is a minister, I'm not. Seriously though, he has been writing in journals for much of his life as have I. He is well read as I am sometimes classified. He loves boating and just being outdoors as do I. When I walked up to him in the park across from the Mexican restaurant, there wasn't much of a pause in the conversation for the next couple hours as we gabbed about this and that. It was a lot of fun.

As I drove back home, I pondered that it probably shouldn't be surprising that we had a great time. After all, just the act of blogging, at least long term anyway, probably assures that we would have similar personalities and I probably would get along well with all those that frequently read my blog or leave comments. It made me think that perhaps I should reach out more often to those in my area of the world. I know for sure that if I'm ever in the vicinity of his state, I will definitely have to repay the favor and stop by for a visit.

Thanks for the lunch Sage/Jeff. Stop back anytime.


Kelly said...

It sounds like you two had a great time together. Next time, maybe it can be for a little longer.

I've only met a couple of my online friends in real life (it was an entire weekend event!), but it was a good experience. As you said, after "knowing" each other for so long online, we felt we would all get along well enough for a face to face meeting.

That said... I can totally understand your desire for semi-anonymity since I feel the same way, for a variety of reasons.

Ed said...

Kelly - Someday I think it would be great to go for a paddle with him.

Susan said...

There are many bloggers that I would love to meet in person - I have been lucky and have met two; one who no longer blogs, but we are still friends and one who I have grown to love like a sister. I tend to be solitary, but I think that has more to do with the fact that there is no one around me who has the same interests and lifestyle. Blogs are my lifeline.

sage said...

I had a great time, Ed! Next time, we'll have to find a river to paddle.

Pumpkin Delight (Kimberly) said...

How fun! It sound like a great visit.

Bob said...

Since starting my blog 10 years ago I am still yet to meet one of my online friends (Kelly doesn’t count as we grew up together and she pretty much got me started blogging). I hope to one day have the experience you had with Sage.

Pat Tillett said...

I'm here after reading Jeff's post on the meeting between the two of. I seem to like many of the things he likes, so here I am. I've only met a couple of fellow bloggers, and I consider one of them a personal friend now.

As long as I'm here I'm going to poke about a bit.

Ed said...

Susan - Back in the day, they used to have blogger conventions. I wonder if they have those anymore?

Sage - Absolutely!

Pumpkin Delight - It was.

Bob - If I'm ever around Nashville, I'll be sure to look you up so you can get one on the score board.

Pat - Welcome to my humble blog. Feel free to poke around all you like.

Leigh said...

Well, good for you for being brave enough to do it! Like many other bloggers, I too and mostly solitary and not socially oriented. A blog seems to make for good grounds to have a sense of privacy yet be free to be oneself. It's a great way to find like-minded souls.