When Blogosphere Friends Become Dinner Guests

Around ManilaForeign Service LifeSocial Gatherings
March 23, 2010

Have I mentioned how much I love you, my blog-reading public.  Last week we reached a new high, with over 550 of you visiting in one day!  Thank you for the L-O-V-E… I know you have many things you could be doing with your time and I appreciate it!

Since I started blogging 2 years ago, I’ve been shocked by the number of connections I’ve made online via social media channels.  I never would have thought it possible to develop solid relationships with strangers, but I find myself doing it almost daily now.

One of my favorite stories regarding online-friendships happened just last month.  I was spending the morning at the local equivalent of the Farmer’s Market when someone shouts out, “Hey, this is a strange question, but are you MinnesotaGal?”  I was totally floored but managed to respond that I did write a blog of that name.  She then proceeded to tell me that she’d been following my blog for several months and “absolutely loved the way my chaise turned out” and “thought my Cambodia photos were spectacular”.  I was completely taken aback by the one-way nature of this conversation and thinking how crazy it was that this woman knew so much about my life.

But then I realized that I had invited her into my life by putting myself out in the Blogosphere…AND wasn’t it cool that she had connected with so many of my stories?  Technology is truly creating a whole new way of being in relationship with people, and I must say that I like it.  Yes, it can start out a bit one-sided sometimes, but there are always chances to rebalance it.

For example, once I got over my shock, I managed to ask for her contact info.  We then proceeded to invite Rebecca over for dinner this past Saturday and I am now thrilled to say that I’ve gained my second blog-reader-turned-friend.  Turns out she even lived in MN for awhile when she went to William Mitchell Law School!  Love how small the world is… we even have common friends!

So my challenge to you today is to stretch the ways that you’re allowing new relationships to come into your life.  It was only because I was pulled out of my “MN friend zone” that I really forced myself to look for new ways to make connections.  That’s the thing, you just never know– your new best friend may end up being a faithful blog reader or a Twitter pal!

PS- I don’t think this trend is going to end anytime soon.  I just heard from another blog reader named Jessica who’s moving to Manila in April.  She and I are already discussing when we’re going to connect.  Too cool…

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  1. Alison says:

    That is absolutely the best part of the incredible on-line expat network. I have made many ‘real-life’ friends because of my blog and many more that I may never actually ‘meet’ but I value their friendship nonetheless :)

  2. Rebecca says:

    Ha! True story…that must have been very strange to have someone out of the blue, in Manila, in a market, start mentioning that! Thank you again for dinner, it was lovely!!

  3. minnesotagal says:

    So true, isn’t it!

  4. Sara Roy says:

    I also find myself connecting with people because of the blogosphere. It’s so nice to be witnessing other families adventures and have them relate to mine. You were the first person I “met” on a blog and then in person. It’s happened since then too, and I love it!

  5. Katrina Buetow says:

    Sarah-I check your site daily over lunch to see what news you have to share with us. It is always one of the highlights of my day and your writting makes me feel as though I am right there actually experiencing life with you. Don’t ever stop! You might one day have to make a book of all your posts- kind of life Carrie from Sex and the City =;)

  6. minnesotagal says:

    Thank you so much Katrina- I really appreciate you staying connected to my life here. Let’s talk via phone soon! PS – I sent Dan some suggestions…

  7. Oh, how fun!!! That’s so awesome!

  8. shannon says:

    The first time I had the strange feeling of “they know so much about me–weird” was the day I wrote the letter to the new family we were sponsoring in Jakarta. She wrote back that she ” already knew us” and had sat up all night reading our entire blog. It was strange, but by the time we met face to face we had been corresponding a while so it felt like meeting an old friend.

    I still haven’t been recognized from our blog, face to face, in real life yet, but it happened to my husband when he went back to DC for training in January. Freaked him out a bit. He said it was very strange but at the same time very cool.

  9. minnesotagal says:

    That’s so fun Shannon, thanks for sharing your story! I look forward to meeting you in person some day! :)

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