Of bloggers met, almost met and not met …

There I was minding my business in the blogging world. Writing posts regularly, replying to comments received on my posts, visiting other blogs, commenting on the ones I liked, promoting my posts on twitter, FB and whatnot. Mulling over site stats, etc. All waz well in my little blogging world.

Then one day, this self-made equilibrium in my blogging world shifted. I left a comment on a discussion thread in a blog forum. And got a response from a blogger I had been secretly admiring from afar. I responded. To which I got another response. And so on and so forth. Soon I de-lurked on her  blog and, I guess, she on mine. We started exchanging the occasional mail. One day, this blogger wrote to me saying that it would be nice to meet up and asked me if there was a chance of my visiting her part of the world. And as coincidence would have it I was due to visit her part of the world in October 2011. I said yes, and we fixed a mutually convenient date to meet up.

But then apprehension set in. Did I really want to meet a fellow blogger offline? Weren’t bloggers supposed to interact only online? And so on and so forth. I had second thoughts, third thoughts, and then some more thoughts as well. But then, curiosity to meet this particular blogger prevailed and if you had been around Dilli Haat in New Delhi on 13 October 2011 around 11.30 am, you might have seen me waiting for this blogger.

I was excited and nervous at the same time, and wondering how on earth I would recognise her as I had no clue as to what she looked like. Even though I was familiar with her rather distinctive Gravatar of a belan-wielding woman, I doubted if she would actually come to meet me with one. :-D Yes, I was meeting Zephyr, a.k.a. The Cyber Nag.

I needn’t have worried or wondered about anything. We recognised each other just fine and had a great time together. And all my doubts and second thoughts, third thoughts and then some more thoughts about meeting a fellow blogger just vanished. Today, I cannot imagine not having met Zephyr or the interactions we have had since then and the interactions that continue till date.

With all my doubts about meeting fellow bloggers offline having vanished, I returned to Mumbai determined to meet up with some more of them. And the first blogger I met with this new-found enthusiasm was Anu Shankrn of A Wandering Mind. It was one of those meetings where I did not feel like I was meeting a stranger as conversation and laughter was in full flow that evening. And it continues to be so as we have met many times since then and speak on the phone now and then.

Then it was the turn to meet Richa of Richland Talk. Again it was one of those meetings which was easy, fun and serendipitous. Though I have not met Richa since then, for some reason or the other, we have kept in touch via Twitter. It has been an ever lasting source of amusement for us to find that we always choose and are almost always chosen to review the same books under BlogAdda’s Book Review programme.

This photo by Deepak (@magic_eye) was taken at the informal mini bloggers meet.

I was on a roll by now. When Zephyr was in Mumbai in December 2011, she initiated an informal bloggers meet. And I was there, with bells on, to meet the others. And what a treat it was. I met bloggers that I followed avidly like Suranga (Gappa and Strewn Ashes) and Deepak (Mumbai Daily and Travel Magic). I met bloggers that I had only come across on blog forums and read occasionally like Umashankar (One Grain Amongst the Storm), Mayank (Photo Street), and Manju (Of Cabbages and Kings). And then I also met bloggers I had not come across till that day like Deepthy (Word Sketches) and Archana. Since this was a large group, it was not possible to interact at length with everyone, but was nevertheless a great opportunity to meet and match the face to the blog, if you know what I mean. While I may not be in touch with all these bloggers today, they are all just a tweet or an email away, not to mention their blogs. Suranga wrote a beautiful poem on the blog meet or rather what we ate, which you can read here. :-D

In March, I met Meera of Meera’s Musings, when she was in Mumbai for a day. It was an unforgettable afternoon where we laughed and laughed and then laughed some more. It was so easy to talk about our blogs, blogging, her family, my travels, books, films, London, the US, the quirky TamBrahm community both of us belong to, the awesome 55 word fiction that Meera writes (which in my opinion is the best in the world), etc. Anybody listening in to our conversation that day could be forgiven for thinking that we were two old friends meeting after a long, long time :-D (you can read Meera’s version of our meeting here).

Along with the hits, I also had misses in meeting bloggers. Actually, just one miss—Deboshree of Paneer and Pulao in Pune. I missed meeting her twice—once each in Delhi and Mumbai. But with Deboshree now moving to Pune and thereby, in my geographical neighbourhood, I am hoping that we will meet soon. After all the third time is lucky, right?

Now for the bloggers I have not met, but I hope to meet in the near future. There are too many to mention here and I am only going to talk about three bloggers that I hope to meet soon. The first is Puru of Shadows Galore. I have a bone to pick with him—he has travelled to all the places that have been on my bucket list for like, forever, and then he writes and photographs so well too ! Luckily for me, he has moved to my geographical neighbourhood and that will make it easier for me to persuade him to meet me. The second blogger that I am hoping to meet is Bhavana of Tilling the EarthwomanI love the range of topics that she writes on, and particularly the offbeat ones. I really look forward to meeting her and putting the face to the blog. :-D The third blogger is Nona of Nona’s Pensieve, who writes post on photography, books films, life in Paris, and Pappetan. I am the self-confessed fan number 1 of his Pappettan Says series (and if you have not read it before, then this is time to go ahead and get acquainted with Pappettan).

So, as I said at the beginning of the post, there I was minding my business in the blogging world. All waz well, but boring and predictable too, to be honest. When I began blogging two years back, I was doubtful of my lasting beyond a few months. As for meeting fellow bloggers, that was not part of Plan A, B, C or Z of my blogging journey. But nearly two years on, I can say without hesitation, that the best part of blogging has been the connections that I have made with fellow bloggers. And meeting bloggers has been an added bonus, as I can attest from the fact that some of them have become close friends today.

I would love to know what you feel about meeting fellow bloggers, the ones you have met, the ones you have missed meeting, and the ones you want to meet.

P.S.: It is my blog’s 2nd anniversary in a couple of days time, and this is the first of the two posts that I am writing on this occasion. Do not forget to come back for the second post which will be up in a couple of days. :-D

57 thoughts on “Of bloggers met, almost met and not met …

    • Three cheers for Zephyr. You know, Umashankar, I also remember a blogger talking very softly to others and no that was not me. :-) I am so glad I was able to meet you and get acquainted with your writing. I know that I don’t always read or comment on time, but that shall soon be remedied.

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  1. Sudhagee, I too am looking forward to meeting you but am so hoping you would come in a mask carved with your blog avatar (which I have come to adore)!!!
    You know I told Zephyr that I cannot bear to meet her because I just need her to stay my virtual heroine that I can induce any no.of qualities and attributes. In btw, you both are so meant for each other (in the sense of blog friends)–the perfect combo.
    I almost met MagicEye this past week–I was very interested in his motorcycle and how he took photographs while riding on his bull (In btw he takes a lot of food related photos and it is very troubling to a gal who is attempt to eat healthy food).
    Yes, it is unnerving to meet virtual avatars and blog titles in flesh and for me you will be my first!!
    Such a sweet post. Looking forward to the next one! And looking forward to hugging you!

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    • I’m going to be the first blogger you meet? Wow ! And put away your apprehensions. I used to feel like that and now having met so many its a really nice experience and one that I would not have missed for anything. :-)

      See you in Madras in June.

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  2. lucky you i will say , I have also met a few bloggers but not many , so hopefully when i am next in india I shall be meeting with them all

    and I will hopefully be metting one blogger this month who is coming to uk :)

    I would love ot meet them all especially as with some I have sucha great relation we have shared a lot of things over the internet so would be great ot share Live too

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    • Yes, lucky me. :-) And I am glad that all my experiences have been so enriching. I hope that I get to meet you too one day, Bikram. And I hope to read about your experiences of meeting fellow bloggers too.

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  3. Such a sweet post Sudha! I am quite glad we met and did the literary discussion (don’t we love those!). I can’t stop delighting that I have been able to meet such like minded people and connect with them. It wouldn’t have been possible but through our blogs and I am sure they ll always be there to light up our lives ahead!
    Btw, I am 4 blogs away from my blogversary. We should celebrate!

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    • Thank you, Richa. And I can never forget that lovely evening spent at Costas or the conversation. We need to meet soon and celebrate our Blogverseries together, catch up on books, films, pet peeves about Mumbai and yes, your new Twitter handle. :-D We have lots to catch up on.

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  4. Lovely post Sudhajee. Yes I too thoroughly enjoyed our blogmeet when Zephyr was here.

    I’ve attended some blogmeets in Mumbai, where someone even came all the way from Pune for it ! Another blogger’s better half once sent us payasam in cute containers at a meet. . We’ve even had small and not so small children at some meets, looking on at their respective folks, in what must be disgust. , with all the laughing and stuff going on. Another blogger inspired my daughter to do a 10 km run for charity.

    Saw your name registered at a recent “official” blogmeet meet in Mumbai and looked for you there. But was disappointed….. Hope we meet again soon.

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    • Thank you so much, Suranga. It was lovely to meet you too.

      Your description of blogger meets sounds like fun and I can imagine non-bloggers not understanding the laughing or the camaraderie. Folks at my office always look upon in bemusement whenever I talk about a blogger.

      I was supposed to attend the “official” blog meet was had to cancel, as I was unwell that time. I’m sorry to have missed meeting you too. But then there are other places that we can bump into, isn’t there :-D Or better still we organise another meet ourselves.

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  5. Ah!!! This post showcases the positives of blogging ;-)
    I too have made some friends for life time here but unfortunately have met only one blogger but fortunately the one who matters the most :)

    And I guess the familiarity creeps in from the fact that we pour our hearts out here in our blogs :)

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    • Yes, fortunately positive blogging experiences have far outweighed the negatives for me, and I guess my post reflects that. :-) I love the fact that each time I comment on a post of a blogger I have met, it is like adding something extra there. You know what I mean, don’t you?

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  6. The third time is surely lucky! Looking forward to breaking the jinx, Sudha. :D
    Such a lovely post though… I have missed out on many Indiblogger meets what with with Delhi-Pune juggling. They always seem to happen in the city I am not in!

    Blog-Anniversary coming up? Super. I will be back to wish you on the D Day. :)

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    • Here’s to breaking that jinx, to meeting in Pune (it has to be Pune, don’t ask me why), and to a new innings of PPP. As for blogger meets I almost attended one last week but couldn’t make it at the last minute. Hopefully both of us will be able to attend an official blog meet sometime soon. :-)

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  7. :) Yes, Mumbai, Bangalore or Paris. I think we will meet in one of these three places. By the way, has blogpress changed some setting? I am not able to post comments unless and until I have a blogpress Id. That is boring!

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  8. Hey, that was a neat round up of all the bloggers you have met! It lovely meeting you at Dilli Haat that day too. Blogging has got me some lovely friends too, including you, and oh, I am missing you so Sudha! I remember you every time I look out of the window at the English sky and the trees and look at the lovely roses. :) I haven’t found the time to blog though. And what is there in the second post? Can’t wait to see!

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    • Thank you so much, Zephyr. I’m missing you too. Enjoy the lovely English weather which for some strange reason they call Indian Summer ! Say hello to England for me. As for the second post, wait and watch !

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  9. Looks like the writer’s block has gone Choomantar… I loved the post and ardently hope to meet more bloggers and of course I also hope to meet you many many more times. Happy writing Sudha!!

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    • Choomantar? Er… I’m not sure. I have to sustain writing regularly. At least I have gotten over the part where I didn’t want to look at blogs at all, especially mine.

      And amen to your wish of meeting you many more times, and who knows I might just meet you in your part of the world next time :-)

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  10. I feel honored to find a place in your post. Now since I have shifted to Pune and its like your second home, hope to meet you soon :)

    Advance blog-anniversary wishes. When I started blogging, yours was one of the blogs I had in mind as benchmarks, dunno how much I accomplished, but will keep trying :)

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    • Thanks for your wishes and kind words, Puru. The pleasure’s all mine, Puru. And yes, the next time I am in Pune for more than just a flying visit, I’ll definitely let you know. I have family and loads of friends there and between the two I don’t have the time to do anything else.

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  11. He he! Minding your own business, were you? I was like that earlier. Until Suranga persuaded me to join the “Mumbai Bloggers lunch circle”. :)

    Apart from Zephyr and Suranga, I hadn’t interacted online with the bloggers who were there at our Dec. 2011 Bloggers’ lunch. I got to know some bloggers with very interesting blogs because of that lunch.

    And now I’m off to visit the other blogs that you’ve mentioned in this post…

    Happy 2nd Blogversary, Sudha!

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    • Sandy B ! I can’t believe you’re here (doing the happy dance) . And a warm welcome to you here. I know you read my posts, but it is always extra nice when you leave a comment. Do continue commenting. :-)

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  12. Mmm! Just missed a informal blog-meet here in bangalore and reading your post has made me regret it more than I did at that time. You have made me look eagerly look forward to taking blog-friends to the next level.

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    • It has been a great experience to meet fellow bloggers, Suresh. And once I got over my apprehensions it’s been a very enriching one too. So nest time you get a chance to meet fellow bloggers and especially the ones you admire, go for it I say ! :-D

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  13. First, I wish you a very happy blogversary! May you write for many many more years and never face a writer’s block.
    Yes, I remember clearly Deepak (Magic_eye) had invited me for that mini bloggers meet just before I was leaving for Cambodia for 3 months. So, I missed meeting you all, some of whom I already knew in online world. But as they say, there is always a next time. :)

    I have also met many bloggers in different meets, invites or simply when I am in their cities or they are in mine. Some of them have become quite close and we are just a call away.

    Most interesting thing was meeting a blogger friend (we had already met a few times & travelled together) in some other country again… this time with our respective husbands! :) Similarly I met 3 Indian bloggers during my recent Malaysian trip. So, it’s not only India but I am fortunate to meet some of them abroad as well.
    Irony is, meeting bloggers from my own city has become a huge task from both sides. But hope is what we all have. :)

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    • Thank, thank you, thank you, Nisha, for your wihes, and especially about the writer’s block one. Had a terrible time last couple of months and am just getting out of it. I think. :-)

      Meeting blogger friends outside the country must have been quite an experience in itself. And talking of meeting fellow bloggers, weren’t we supposed to meet in between our travels. Do let’s plan to meet soon !

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    • Thanks, Blogwatig. And I have never attended a full fledged blogger meet yet. Somehow, it has always been jinxed. I would love to read about your experience there. Are you planning to write a post on it?

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  14. Meeting you was so wonderful, sudha!!! i have yet to meet many other bloggers i have known for longer, but just as you said, from the moment we met, it was like we have known each other forever!!! and on that note, lets plan our next meet sometime this week. i am finally back to my usual routine life :D

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  15. It was very useful reading your story of meeting other bloggers and how it happened first time with Zephyr. I do blog but in a limited way and do not even know if my writing fits within blogging guidelines. Thanks again.

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    • Welcome here, Nandan and thank you so much for stopping by and commenting. The best thing about blogging is that there are no set guidelines, so if you feel like blogging continue doing so. From my personal experience, I can say that it has been a very enriching one. :-)

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  16. Pingback: 3 years, 283 posts, 2,07,006 words… | My Favourite Things

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