AJ, whom I met last year, and I met up for coffee last week and we couldn't stop talking.
Her hair is a little less curly, mine is a lot more crazy gold/red, but we recognized each other right away.
Did you ever have a pen pal when you were growing up? I did. My Swedish friends and I wrote hundreds of letters that traveled across the ocean so that we could keep our friendship up to date until the next time I could visit Sweden.
I feel like the friends I've made online are like pen pals. We've shared some deep stuff in the emails and text messages and phone calls we've exchanged. Also, when you're "hanging out" online ALL you're doing is talking. You're not distracted by the movie you went to see, or by the shopping you're doing.
You're just getting to know each other, and I think you do so much more quickly than someone you meet in person. It takes a lot of get-togethers to reach the level of sharing that comes more quickly in an online friendship.
AJ and I got together in a local coffee shop. Of course we talked "shop" since we're both co-hosts. (You've heard of this alphabet thing we're doing, right? If you're new to this, click on the tab above that says A-Z Challenge and go sign-up. Now. I'll wait.) That was a small part of it, though. We talked like real friends talked.
We shared our lives, our struggles, our hopes and dreams and frustrations and were both amazed to see how long we'd been talking when "nature called." That's friendship to me. Real people. Real life.
Have you ever met someone you first met online? Do you think there are "real" friends and "online" friends? Explain. I'd like to hear your opinion.
~Tina, who is trying to play nice with blogger and composing directly in the window instead of cutting and pasting for OpenOffice, but still gets wonky formatting as a gift...