Monday, September 21, 2009

There’s also an often-overlooked good side to the internet

I stole the title for today's post from the Pioneer Woman. I thought it was interesting that the topic of her post today is the same as it is for those of us who did the meet-up in New York City this weekend. It's about the good side of the internet. The side that brings together people who might otherwise not meet. Relationships that can become so meaningful that I almost hate to say "I met her on the internet" because that implies that it might not be as meaningful as "real" relationships.

I lugged my good camera all the way up to NYC on the train, but unfortunately, you'll have to check out Laura's blog for pictures. I was so busy having a great time that I only took a few pictures. It's probably a good thing though. Laura takes much better pictures than I do. She really captured each of us very well. (Not only did I have to do rabbit ears in some of Laura's pictures, I also couldn't resist popping a few bunny ears into the pictures of perfect strangers in Time's Square.)

I'd like to echo the experience that Laura had in regards to being an introvert. I love spending time with other people, but typically I need breaks to recharge and stay fresh. This past weekend I was perfectly content to spend every moment with these ladies. I did take a few quiet moments to just wander and soak up the city, but that was all I needed. The entire weekend just flowed so naturally, that I felt at home the entire time.

The women, oh, how do I even start to describe what they are like? They were everything that their blogs hinted about, but they are so much more than that. I loved talking with everyone as a group, and I loved every chance I got to break off and just talk with one or two of the ladies. There is just no way to sum up everything I discovered about them over a 48 hour period.

Bridget is a wonderful mix of strong woman and Southern charm. At a glance, you expect her to be a sweet little thing, but take a moment to go deeper and you find a sophisticated world traveler and shrewd business woman. She's classy and tough and her stories can hold my attention for hours.

Lindsay is just pure lightness. She has the brightest smile, the sweetest voice, and the most comforting hug. The room is a little brighter with her in it, conversations are a little more enthusiastic when she joins in, but don't dismiss her as a cheerleader. She doesn't just add cheer, she adds depth and spirit as well.

Rita is intense and passionate in a very free spirited sort of way. However, instead of crossing over into the range of flaky hippy; she's sharp, grounded, and extremely practical. It's not a mix I've come by often. She's energizing, inspirational, compassionate, creative and thought provoking and she does it REALLY WELL.

Laura is honest, witty, down to earth, and one of the quickest thinkers I've ever met. She may be one to just rip the band-aide off without warning, but you only cringe for a second because she follows it up with just the right words to make everything better again. She also has the same appreciation that I have for high brow humor. (By high brow humor I mean that of a 12-year-old boy.)

Cacey is - oh, she's going to kill me for saying this - she's simply adorable. She's sweet and smart and has the energy of the young woman she is, but she also has a maturity beyond her years. She's everything I wish I was when I was her age. She's also very tolerant to put up with our shenanigans.

But, there was something more than just the six women who showed up for a crazy weekend in NYC. There was this ever shifting synergy of personalities. When Bridget and Rita teamed up, we had the best tour guides ever. I'd follow the two of them anywhere knowing it would be the best trip ever. Mix Rita and Lindsay and the sweetness and compasion make for a welcoming place to reveil who you really are. Mix Lindsay and Laura and you get all the laughter mixed with hugs that you could ever need. Mix Laura and Cacey and you find yourself deep in thought on something serious, only to have them snap you back up with one well placed line. As we walked and ate and talked these little groupings would form, break up, and form again, making every moment more special then the last. No matter the mix, it was always something special. Sort of like Jelly Bellies for the soul.


London said...

Hey, I've been called worse things than adorable before. Like, annoying little twit, so I'll take it!

Mel said...

I love your descriptions of everyone. You can't get those descriptions from photos. It really does sound like a great time that you all had. It does seem crazy to make internet friends and then to actually meet them in real life. But such are the times that we live in. I would love to meet each one of you someday. I was telling Laura that you all hold celebrity status for me since I read all of your blogs. I enjoyed following your tweets also. They always make me smile, as well as LOL sometimes!

LauraC said...

BEST POST EVER. You really accurately described every person and my thoughts on them.

Except for me being the mean one. HA HA!

And did you like my photoshopping of your orange t-shirt.

And did you see that Motherlover was up for best song at the Emmies last night.

Karen said...

I love reading everyone's description of the weekend. I am so fortunate to have my internet friends and I agree with you that there is a certain stigma that could be attached to it. For whatever reason, this seems to be how to meet people you really have things in common with! Hope we can meet soon.

Stacey said...

Sounds fabulous!! I'm glad you guys had so much fun.

Karla said...

Sounds fantastic, adventurous, and entertaining! Glad to hear that you had such a wonderful time and that everyone is as great as they seem online.

JenFen said...

Jelly beans for the soul - I love it. I loved all your descriptions of the various personalities and their various interactions with each other. It sounds like such a wonderful and memorable experience. I hope we get the chance to meet someday, even if I am all the way here in Cali. I do wonder how many times you said dude though. LOL!

Julie said...

Love this post--you seem to capture everyone's personality so well. Glad it was super fun. I can imagine you totally making everyone laugh!

Lindsay said...

I agree with Laura's post on my blog that this is that you win Best Post award. Awesome.

Don't let her profile picture fool you, y'all. Joanna can smile!

I still didn't hear a single "Dude."

Beth said...

Dude--awesome post. For a software engineer (or something like that), you sure do have a way with words. Can't wait to meet you IRL!

*Kc* said...

Aw! I love your post! It totally describes everyone just as I wanted to hear :)

So glad yall had fun! Jelly bellies for the soul is awesome!

-Bridget said...

This was such a cool post.

I am so glad I finally got to meet you. Now when I see your picture I don't even see your stoic scowl anymore. I see you happy, smiling, laughing. I look forward to the next time we meet. It was a wonderful weekend.

Maybe your new profile pic needs to be the "after" shot when Laura did your makeup? *evil grin*

Kara said...

Great post! I loved all of your descriptions of the women. Excellent! I really loved the jelly belly comment too!