Sunday, January 9, 2011

the tangled web

I've been online now for about 13 years.  I've gone from not knowing how to turn a computer on, to feeling pretty comfortable with dinking around with the computer and the internet.

I've chatted online for several years now, in several programs.  The first time I started chatting I actually was using a file sharing program that also had rooms for chatting in text (this was before webcams).  I spent time talking to people from all over the world, and was pretty surprised to discover two things:
1. No matter what culture or country you live in, we are all human and have that as a common denominator.
2. The world seems a much smaller place online.

One of the first friends I made was a young man from England.  We struck up a friendship, and chatted about everything under the sun for about 15 months when I convinced him to leave home and come for a visit to my home.

Mark is a wonderful person, and I was amazed to learn he had never been more than about 50 kilometers from his home in his entire life, and never on a plane!  I thought it took a great deal of courage to come all the way to the US to visit with strangers.  This was a first time experience for my family too.  I think they thought I was a little bit insane, but thankfully they really do trust my judgement.  I wanted to see how everyone would react, and I was glad to see that Mark loved the visit, and my family, and my family loved Mark too and we all had a great time.  So much so that when Mark left, he and I both shed tears of sadness that he had to go.

I share this because I am concerned about much of the negativity I read about the internet.  I know there are sick people who use the internet for the wrong reasons, perverted reasons.  But I have also seen the good side, made many acquaintances I call friends, and had some exciting adventures along the way.  I told Steve that he better participate with me or be left at home, and so he has shared my adventures.

I have met some amazing people, some interesting people, and some who were a bit too attached to this thing we call the internet.  But I would do it all again, for the opportunity to meet and discuss, with people I normally wouldn't have the opportunity to talk to, many subjects about many different things.

It has changed me as a person, as have all my life experiences, and I have learned so much. 

I thank you all for the opportunity to learn and grow.  And I thank you Mark, for being my leap into the tangled web of the internet, into the adventure of a lifetime.

And the adventure continues.....


  1. It really is amazing! I, too, have met a couple of people online years ago and we are still friends and spend time together. My good friend, Barb, I met on the Rik Emmett (from the band Triumph) site about 12 years ago. She is from Canada and we have spent weekends in each other's countries and gone to concerts together. It is too bad some people spoil it.
    Thanks for being you and I am glad I met a new friend just because of facebook and some guy who is a crabby cook!

  2. Wow, 13 years. I've emailed here and there but haven't done alot since blogging which I love. And i LOVE the affirmation and support you get from it and your new friends, so I can understand what you're saying. The world does seem much smaller, you're right!

  3. Thanks for the comments Denise and Josie! Yes the world gets smaller every year for me, and I am blessed by the friends that live near me and also those I've met only online!