March 17 – 24, 2019.
I know I have probably written more than once about making friends on the road – but meeting people when we travel is kind of an event and we just made some new friends so here I go again…As I may have said before, unlike sailing where you meet people in cruiser bars, at beach happy hours, or by someone coming to your aid in some small sticky situation (dinghy swamped, boat gone aground, small electrical fire on board), we have initially met most of our land traveling friends in the virtual world (Facebook or through this blog).
For the longest time my sailing friend, Ellen, had been telling me that I needed to check out a blog called Roaming About, written by her blogging friend Liesbet. Ellen reads tons of blogs and has lots of blog friends – she reads and comments on their blogs and in turn they read and comment on her blog. At the time I only read a couple of blogs regularly – and those were people I knew personally. Ellen was sure I’d like Liesbet and her husband, Mark since we had so much in common – they used to sail but now they house sit and had just bought a van – yeah – just like us!
I am not much of a blog reader – although I’d like to be. I have dozens of blogs cued up in my Bloglovin’ account but I never even look at them. I think it has something to do with being an introvert. Even just being a reader can feel kind of personal and overwhelming. But I did start to read Liesbet’s. And then commented. And then she started commenting on Make Like An Apeman. And then I started reading her blog and thinking OMG – that’s exactly what I/we would do – or OMG – we did do that exact grueling hike or had that same exact reaction to visiting that same amazing place. Then after a while I started occasionally mentioning Liesbet to Greg, telling him, Mark and Liesbet did this or Liesbet made this comment on our blog (and every time I had to remind Greg who they were – the blogger Ellen turned me on to, the house sitters, the Wirie people [Another thing we had in common – they used to manufacture and sell a wifi boosting product for boats and we used to own one!]).
And so we were in Arizona just back from Mexico and Mark and Liesbet were also in Arizona – also just back from Mexico! (Albeit at 4 days theirs was a much shorter trip south of the border). And now that I had said Liesbet’s name enough times to Greg, I no longer had to add “The Wirie people” as if it was her last name. It was time to meet these people in real life and see if having so much in common would lead to a real-life friendship.
* Click pics to enlarge and open into a slide show.