What strikes me the most about the Blathering is how comfortable I felt with everyone. People I’ve only seen in person once or twice before. People I’ve never seen before. I felt comfortable with every single one. I recognized them all by sight. I didn’t have to introduce myself. I never felt awkward. Really. Not once.
I’m sure a big part of that is the fact this is my third time. I didn’t have as big of a learning curve as some, given that I had met at least half of the people there at previous Blatherings and have been reading their blogs for years. The first year I went, I started reading attendees’ blogs in June, then met them in November, and yeah, it was awkward at times. I knew them academically: how many kids they had, where they lived, what their husband did. But I didn’t KNOW them yet. It was still a great weekend and I always felt welcome and like we all ‘got’ each other, we just weren’t best friends yet.
But now, even the people I started following in June of this year, I felt like I KNEW. I’m repeating myself, but it felt easy and natural to hang out with every person there. I ended up in a lot of different groups through the weekend and it was always easy. I was never the third wheel. I just have never known anything like it.
*Subtitle: But New Orleans is a terrible place for an introvert, so perhaps let's not go there again. (I did not like the city. But I'd go again if my people were going to be there!)