Since I started blogging here in August 2004, I’ve gotten to know other bloggers or just plain strangers who have strayed into this space of mine. There was Jeannie in Paris (!), Elaine here in NY, and now Lou from Chicago. (Lou was actually the reason I signed up for Multiply ages ago.) These blogfriends have gotten to be more than just readers and bloggers I read after the years that have passed.
I regret that I have yet to meet some of the more remarkable ones like my favorite couple, the Two Jeromes, Jerome and Jher. Despite the many times I’ve gone home since we met online, sometimes it’s not that easy to pop in and sometimes things get too hectic. I remain hopeful that we will meet one day. Many of those who have interacted with me in this blog have come and gone. There are those who keep tabs on me, though, popping up here and sometimes at my Etsy shop’s website.
We’ve “known” each other through life changes and the shared grief of lost parents. I’ve discovered new hobbies like lomography which I’ve always been interested in but I just don’t have the energy or time to get into. Lou is a fantastic photographer as well. We’ve shared with each other our ups and downs and hobbies through our own spaces on the web. In words and in pictures, we took a peek into each other’s lives.
When Lou left me a comment here that she was headed for New York after Christmas, I thought I’d just ask and see if she might have the time to meet up. I know how vacations can get hectic. I am the last person to take it personally when I cannot be scheduled or when people schedule and don’t end up confirming so we don’t get to meet up at all. If it happens, it happens — and happen it did!
We scheduled lunch for Friday in the city. I wanted to pick some place closer to where she was staying by the Upper East Side, but I ended up staying close to familiar ground. Celsius at Bryant Park or Bryant Park Grill. I’m glad Lou picked the former because it’s a seasonal restaurant that “pops up” in Bryant Park when the rink is on the great lawn. While I have seen it the last couple of years, I’ve never been in it, and this luncheon was as good an occasion as any can be to explore this restaurant.
The food was great from the calamari to the braised short rib I had and the caramel pecan chocolate fudge cake we shared for dessert. Unfortunately, we were both so engrossed in catching up that I failed to take pictures. (Lou managed to take a picture of the dessert before we dug in, though.)
It was as if we had known each other all these years in the “real” sense. I have always been struck by Lou’s no-nonsense straightforward comments and friendly advice. One thing that struck me in our personal exchange last Friday, though, was this simple line from her: “Some people come into our lives to stay, and some people are just passing by.” How true.
I know I have this running joke that I have 8 readers keeping track of the things I write here, all of whom are not related to me nor known to me personally. =) I’m happy with the 8. It is always a blessing to actually talk to them in person when fate brings us together somehow. And when that happens, it feels like we’ve known each other forever. Indeed.
Enjoy the rest of your stay in New York, Lou.. until you come back to view its beauty when the trees are green and the flowers are abloom.