Monday, June 14, 2010
Meeting Liz in London
I first got to know Liz through her blog about two years ago. We started emailing each other and having the occasional instant message chat when we'd manage to be online at the same time (despite the six hour time difference). Last year I started creating t-shirt designs and Liz bought two of the shirts and modeled them for my blog. With encouragement from me, Liz took a writing course to pursue her dream of publishing a children's book. Later, she started up an online forum and I immediately joined and had the pleasure of participating in a couple of her contests. By then, we knew we could count on each other for support.
When she contacted me to ask if we could meet up in London during my trip there with my son, I was thrilled. Liz lives about 3 hours by bus from London and this would be her first visit there. I felt extremely honored that she was willing to travel so far to meet me. Not only that, but she would be bringing her boyfriend Richard with her. I was very curious to meet him and see if he was good enough for my dear friend.
We made plans to meet in front of Westminster Abbey. If it turned out to be a nice day, we would walk through Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. If it were stormy, we would visit the National Gallery and Portrait Gallery instead.
Charlie and I arrived at our meeting place first. When Liz and Richard walked towards us, I immediately recognized them and greeted Liz with a warm hug. Her boyfriend Richard turned out to be very personable and funny. I was especially impressed by the caring way he treated Liz.
It turned out to be a sunny day and we had a wonderful time walking through the beautiful grounds of Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. We spent over 3 hours together, much of it walking. Midway, we stopped for a bite to eat and ate sandwiches under a tree by the Serpentine River. It was fun comparing notes on the differences between England and the United States and learning more about each other's lives.
It was difficult for me to say goodbye to my friend. I told her she was just as I thought she would be and she said the same of me. I look forward to getting to know Liz better through our blogs and emails. I've issued her an open invitation to visit me anytime and to bring Richard with her.
You can read what Liz wrote about our meeting here. For the record, I'd like everyone to know that these photos don't do Liz justice. In person, she has beautiful blue eyes and a lovely fair complexion.