Sunday, February 27, 2011

Two bloggers meet

We always hear stories about how small the world is, but until you experience something like I did today, you don't really understand just what that means.

I've been writing a blog for many years. Started out as a paper and pen diary, but quickly progressed to the internet as soon as this was available and I found it. I'm a writer by profession, so it's only natural for me to keep track of my life this way.

I was surfing around one day and saw a photo of Warren, PA. That's not too far from where I live, so I followed the link to a page and there was Linda Gross' blog called Linda's Photo Journal. We started exchanging comments on our blog posts and promise to get together for coffee some day. Never thought that some day would be in the middle of the northwestern PA winter, but it did!

Ridgway hosts a huge, international carving gathering every February. It is the largest non-competitive gathering of these extreme artists in the entire world and it gave the town the name of "Chainsaw Capital of the World." It draws hundreds of carvers and upwards of 40,000 visitors stopping by the see what chainsaw art really is. Walking through town, we saw plates from New York, Ohio and several other States. If you've never seent this extreme artform done in person, you really need to check it out. How they can look at a log and "see" the animal or whatever in it is way beyond me.

I had posted about it last week for Camera Critters and not long after, Linda sent me a note saying she hoped to get here and would I be around. Of course, I'd be here, just depends on whether or not I could get out of bed. Arielle got up since I had to take some photos and interview a few of the carvers, creators and visitors for ny article. When it was time to leave, I just took an extra pain pill to let me keep moving a few hours. Trevor took me over to the carving grounds and stuck beside me to make sure I didn't get bumped or fall and hurt myself. It's so embarassing that I need my 16-year old to walk beside me and hold my hand at times to keep me from falling. My balance is really off these days. (Keep your fingers crossed the new neurologist in Pittsburgh can help)He isn't one of those teenage boys who won't be seen with their mother. He's had to help me walk or get up for several years, so he doesn't think anything of it. I know the kids snicker at him and call him "Mommy's boy" and worse, but he just pretends those mutants don't exist and he does what he knows is right.

We had just got to the carving lot and I get a call from Linda who she says she and her husband Bob were about 12 miles outside of town and asked where can they park. The town is REALLY full because of the gathering. About 10 minutes or so later, she calls again. They're there! While I try not to get nervous meeting new friends for the first time, I can't help it. I lose words and have trouble following the conversations at times. I look like death warmed over many days. Thankfully, it was a decent morning pain-wise and I was able to smile and enjoy the day. Trevor and I walk down to where they're waiting and there is Linda's smiling face walking towards us. That is what told me we're going to be great friends. If you've never seen her blog, you owe it to yourself to stop by and see her gorgeous photography. Her photos are a reflection of what a wonderful person she truly is, both inside and out.

We walked around the carving grounds, stopping to take many photos. Bob beat me to posting a photo of Linda and me, but I'm glad he did. The photo turned out really nice. Linda and I share the same passion for photography, so we had plenty to talk about. She had her new camera with and is just learning how to use all the features. I'm sure her photos will turn out beautiful!

After seeing everything we wanted to, we went to the best Italian place in town - Patalano's Place II. I always take new visitors there. We talked and talked and laughed a lot, too. Our time together was far too short, but we'll meet again and this time Randy or the kids will drive me to Warren and she can show me around.

Thank you, Linda and Bob for stopping by and for making my afternoon a very good one. Lets do it again soon. :)

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

We had a good afternoon as well. I'm happy that we met each other, Gretchen. I am looking forward to the next time we get together. Neither Bob nor I knew you took the picture of us. We like it :-)

7:21 AM  
Blogger eileeninmd said...

That is so nice that you and Linda have met. I have been commenting on Linda's blog for some time and she is a very nice person.

7:49 AM  
Blogger Willard said...

I am glad you and Linda got to meet. One gets acquainted with some many wonderful people through blogging, and in many cases when one meets them in person, it seems as though you have known them for years.

7:16 PM  
Blogger This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Gretchen: Nicely posted, Linda is also a friend of mine.

10:39 PM  

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