When the chance came to expand that type of contact came along, I jumped at the opportunity. Barbara and Earl Torris have owned a winter escape home in the Tucson area for a dozen years. Since that is only two hours from us in Scottsdale, we made arrangements to get together this winter, to renew and strengthen the friendship we started last July in Portland.
But, then things got even more interesting. Linda Myers's blog claims she is A Bag Lady in Waiting. She and her husband, Art, live in the Seattle area. This year Linda and Art decided a few months of southern Arizona sunshine would be a nice break from the winter time clouds and gloom of a Pacific Northwest winter. So, they rented a place at a huge RV resort just outside Tucson.
Suddenly, I had two blogging friends living within 10 minutes of each other and just a few hours down the Interstate. Here was the perfect chance to see Barbara and Earl again while meeting a new couple, Linda and Art.
Arrangements were made for a time to meet and talk with Linda and Art, hook up with Barbara and Earl, share a meal together, and add a few more people to my expanding circle of blogging buddies.
We already knew and loved Barbara and Earl. How would things go with Linda and Art? This past Monday Betty and I made the easy trip to Tucson to see what would develop. I can report a total success. Linda is an absolute ball of enthusiasm and energy. She is loving her time in Tucson in the sunshine, and has every intention of returning next year. She is inquisitive and so easy to talk to.
We chatted with Art about his powerful book, Return to Viet Nam. It details his journey back to Vietnam in 2005 to deal with his memories from his time in 1968 when he was stationed at Da Nang. He and Linda gave us the full tour of the resort. We even learned about Pickle ball.
|Art and Linda, Betty, Barbara, Me, and Earl|
The six of us drove to a neighborhood Mexican restaurant for big plates of chimichangas, Taco salads, enchiladas and blogging talk: how long will you keep blogging, what do you do about spammers, how do you make money....all the normal stuff bloggers talk about.
All of us seemed to instantly hit it off. When it was time for Betty and me to head home to make another appointment we felt we had made a great start on a solid relationship with Linda and Art, were reminded of why we like Barbara and Earl so much, and were pleased that we had taken the time and effort to connect with these fine folks.
If I have learned one lesson during my satisfying retirement journey it is to take a risk every now and again, especially with people. I kick myself for all the friendships and enriching personalities I overlooked in years gone bye because I didn't make the effort.
I refuse to do that again.