Bloggy Friendships

Me and Heidi
There are different relationships in blogging. There are people whose goal it is to get as many comments as they can get (and there’s a hint of that desire in all of us, I suspect), so they go out and leave tons of comments everywhere. They do Wordless Wednesday and Book Reviews and all sorts of things where you leave your link so others can find you, and hopefully leave a comment. There is nothing wrong with this kind of blogging. I’ve participated in Wordless Wednesday and Book Review blogs myself, and really enjoyed it. But for me, that’s not where the lasting relationships, the real online friendships, are born. The online friendship requires a bigger commitment, and comes from finding someone who touches you in some way, with their writing, their humor, their story. Sometimes it’s all of these things, sometimes less. I do know that I’ve made some real friends here, people that I genuinely care about and miss when they go away. Sometimes they drop off of the face of the earth, and you realize, you weren’t really friends after all. Sometimes, they stop blogging, but you end up being friends somewhere else, like Facebook.

Heidi is such a friend. I don’t remember when I found her blog, or if she found me first, or how it came about. I know we have a few blogs in common, and that she knows my blog friend Chrissy in person. Heidi doesn’t really blog anymore, but she did for several years, and I loved reading about her life in Hong Kong. Her life with her mother, her teaching, her parties and thoughts on the party lifestyle of a certain set in H.K., her aspirations to be a singer (she has a lovely voice, and tons of heart, which is a deadly combination…I mean that in the best way…deadly in that it gets straight to the listeners heart). She came to my blog often, and left long, thoughtful comments. I went to her blog and did the same. Well, the other day, she said something on Facebook about being at Swan Oyster Depot, and I thought, “Wait, that’s in San Francisco!” And lo and behold, she is here! She came to see a friend with a new baby, and to connect with other friends, and to attend the Outlands Festival in Golden Gate Park. Happily, she and her friend Ken (who also knows Chrissy in person) were available to have brunch with me today. YAY! Really, you only have a few days in San Francisco, and you made time to see ME? I love that, and am so grateful.

So I drove into the City, blissfully cool and crisp after the 100 degree heat here, a mere 40 miles away, and we went to the Cliff House for lunch. The Cliff House is one of my favorite San Francisco restaurants, though it’s changed a lot since I first went there. It has been there since 1863, and has had many incarnations. But the food is consistently good (not as good this time as the last time I went, I think, but still very good), and the view of the ocean, right there outside of your window, is truly lovely. You can watch the waves crashing on the rocks, watch the surfers hoping for a wave, watch the seagulls swooping and flying around. It’s relaxing. So we stopped there and had a lovely meal, and got to know each other in person. When you meet someone in person, whom you’ve only known online, there’s always that brief fear, what if…what if they are different in person than they are online? What if I don’t like them? What if they don’t like me? What if we just don’t have anything to say to each other? Always a fear, but it’s not happened yet. I’ve met a couple of blog friends in the past, and they’ve quickly become real life friends. Heidi was like this for me. I felt that I knew her, and she and Ken were both so warm and real, that I was very comfortable right away. I don’t know when we’ll see each other again, since she lives in Hong Kong, and I live in Walnut Creek, and Ken lives in Toronto. But I hope we do get together again sometime. Perhaps in L.A. Chrissy, want to come along?

7 thoughts on “Bloggy Friendships

  1. When I’ve met people through the internet, it’s been as you described. They are what they seem and it truly is a pleasure to get together. Always a fun thing to do. Thanks for sharing this.

    I agree on the comments. They are delightful to get but I don’t go around putting them out to get them. I write when I think of something that I want to add but otherwise, I read, enjoy and go on. I guess I’d get more comments if I did do it more myself but my time is limited and unless I really have something to say, I just don’t do it.

    • Rain, nice to see you. I haven’t been reading or writing on blogs much lately. I’m going to pop over and see what you’re up to. πŸ™‚

      Speaking of meeting people in person, did you ever meet my mom in real life? I know she went to Las Vegas with a group of online friends, but I don’t know if you were one of them.

  2. WOW! I am sooooooo excited that you two got to meet up in person! Julie, I am hoping to get to your neck of the woods soon-ish. Maybe next year? I’ve been meaning to get to L.A. one of these days!

    I’d also love to meet up with Cherry as well! Let’s do a lunch date or something. I’d love for you to meet my Little One too! Let’s work on a plan πŸ™‚ We’ll make this happen. xo

    • Chrissy, SF is just a hop skip and a jump (by plane) from LA! Kind of a hellish drive, though, if you’re driving with little kids. We did it when Maya was 5, and she was fine, but I wouldn’t recommend it much younger. I do hope you can come this way! We’d LOVE to meet you in person!

  3. It seems all the social aspects of online life have moved to Facebook, and I miss the community of blogging in the early days. I enjoy personal Facebook updates but miss the stories that were told on blogs. It’s good to meet people face to face, even if it is a little scary too.

    • V-Grrrl, you know what I’m more afraid of than meeting people face to face? Meeting them on the phone. Silly, huh? So Heidi and I talked on FB about meeting up, and she gave me her phone number, and I thought…uh, maybe I’ll text her. I’m always worried the phone conversations will be awkward. But she is from overseas and didn’t have text on her phone while here, so we ended up calling each other. You know what? It was absolutely fine, and not awkward at all. I wonder where my worries come from?

  4. Glad that you were able to go out and meet your bloggy friend. I remember when we met Gina years ago in Berkeley, and I had similar concerns about meeting up. But she and her hubby (i.e., “Hubba Hubba” as she calls him) were terrific folks. That was one of the highpoint of blogging for me. You know, forging relationships, meeting essentially your “pen pal,” and then everything clicks. πŸ™‚

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