When I was a child we were encouraged to have Pen Friends. I had two. One was a girl called Diana Wickens who lived in Bexhill on Sea.. As I remember it, we wrote for quite a few years - up to my getting married in fact - but then we lost touch. The other was a girl called Vera Zborilkova, who lived somewhere in Czechoslovakia - I can't remember where. The purpose of these pen friends I suppose was a)to encourage us to learn and keep up the art of letter=writing and b)in the case of Vera, to practise one's English. That has reminded me that I also had a French pen friend, although as I always hated learning French I seem to have completely blocked details of that pen friendship out of my mind. But in later life I always wished that my French was better. But the idea of ever meeting one's Pen Friends was remote - travel then in the 1940's and early 50's was not like travel today. No, these were long-distance, never to be met friends on the whole.
The times have changed Now what we have are Blog friends. Some of the people I blog with have been blogging with me since I first began over four years ago and they really do seem like real friends. The whole idea of blogging has opened up the world to us all. And as far as I am concerned, every blog friend I have had the good fortune to meet in person has been an added bonus.
I think when choosing who to blog with one tends to veer towards Kindred Spirits in any case, so it is hardly surprising that when one meets them 'in the flesh' they immediately gel.
I met Elizabeth (About New York) when we went to New York. She took us out for coffee and we rode on a New York Bus across town together. Anne from Morning AJ - we met in Kirby Lonsdale for lunch a couple of years ago when they were up this way on holiday and this year they called here for lunch on their way past.
Denise of Mrs Nesbitt's space doesn't live all that far away from here and she was able to call with her husband (on the bike) a couple of years ago for a cuppa. Fiona (Marmalade Rose) lives quite near and we have met several times too. But the latest meeting, is a real long distance affair. Margaret of Thousand Flower is coming with her family for a holiday in England and they are to spend the night with us.
What I find so pleasing about the whole thing is the way in which travel, communications, the making of friendships, all these have made the world seem a smaller and friendlier place. In these days of turmoil, wars, civilstrife, refugees, hunger, poverty - the list goes on for ever - a small oasis of long-distance friendship is something to treasure, don't you agree?