Yesterday Elmine and I took the car down to Antwerp to meet Jon Husband (of Qumana fame) who came up from Paris. In travel time Antwerp was half way for all of us, and a city we all three wanted to visit for a day anyway.
We met Jon before, about two years ago, when he visited our home, and it was great fun to meet up again. A thought that passed through my head on the way to Antwerp, was on Jon’s mind as well, as he made a remark about it as we walked out of Antwerp Central Station. Meeting face to face for a second time, especially if some time has passed, is about reaffirmation.
You know when you get in touch through your blog, and that interaction starts to spill over into other media you feel connected. The first face to face meeting is about curiousity: wanting to see more of the person behind the on-line exchanges. But that first meeting usually for me is when I really start to feel a bond with somebody. Even if before that the on-line exchanges were minimal, meeting with people stay bright moments in my memory, even after years. So I start to feel a much closer personal connection with someone, though the on-line exchanges may carry on in much the same fashion. Then when the second meeting occurs after some time, in this case two years, you wonder: will the other feel the same way about the connection we have as I do?
After a day of conversation, food and drink, and strolling through rainy Antwerp, what can I say: closeness of connection reaffirmed.
We talked shop, saw affluent parts of Antwerp and parts less so, had hot waffels with whipped cream, talked about personal stuff, bought shoes, chocolate, sat down for a Belgian beer and lunch, and talked more shop. Jon it was great meeting you again, and to see the passion in your eyes when we talked about how this connected world of information abundance we live in is changing, and changing us.
More photos of the day at Flickr of course.