Friday, May 29, 2015

Connecting With An Internet Crony

A highlight of any trip is often personal interactions, and my Seattle trip proved no exception.

The Internet has become a boon to everyone with a computer or smartphone when communicating with other humans. Some of our species take the activity too far, texting back and forth within the same room. Teenagers often do this, but they are a subspecies with a unique head and mindset.

Thinking about it further, however, I may join these youngsters in the future. When hearing wanes, a common occurrence for individuals of a certain age, texting may be a better solution for interacting with the rest of the world than expensive hearing aids, which many people complain do not work very well. But I digress...

Members of the boomer generation take advantage of the opportunity the Internet presents to reconnect with people from our past, maintain connections with friends and family as well as business-related goings-on in our present life, and spur new connections with people initially met online.

Online connections can stretch across the world.

Meeting folks seen only in pictures and avatars is an exciting, interesting event. We imagine, consciously sometimes but subconsciously all the time, what the person on the other end of our connection looks and sounds like. Are they very different from our imagined friend, or are our imaginations right on?

 I met one of my electronic contacts, a fellow blogger, in person during my Seattle visit. Rita Robison, consumer specialist, writes about issues impacting boomers on her blog The Survive and Thrive Boomer Guide. 

Rita lives a couple of hours south of Seattle, but was traveling north - right past the city - with her sister. She willingly detoured into the city, fighting traffic and other city travel headaches, to meet for lunch.

Hub joined us, so we made a merry foursome. He was supposed to be working, but played hooky for a couple of hours. We walked the few blocks to our rendezvous spot. The only annoyance encountered required dodging individuals too involved with their phones to notice other people along crowded sidewalks.

I recognized Rita immediately from her blog picture.

We spent a couple of hours discussing our current lives and previous interests, how we came to the blogosphere, future plans. She and her sister added insight into our Seattle stay.

We parted new real, physical, actual, authentic friends - I am not quite sure what word is appropriate to express a transformation from individuals connected by the wonders of the computer age to face-to-face acquaintances.
Rita and me
Some Silicon Valley techie will come up with a suitable term, I am sure.

Meanwhile, I am glad Rita and I connected. In person.

Speaking of food - lunch, specifically,
my delicious mushroom soup and chopped salad from Seattle's Purple Cafe and Wine Bar.