Friday, September 10, 2004
the blogger meeting, revisited
I had a dream last night. And in that dream was another blogger named Dave. In the dream Dave had rigged some kind of raised platform that resembled a mini skateboarding circuit. Dave was explaining to me that I had to take my little toy (a lego version of Karl Malone on a skateboard. don't ask.) and successfully navigate it on the course without it falling over or off. And as Dave explained all this he was dipping his finger into a container of some kind of white goo (though at first I thought it was hummus, but realized later it had the consistency of a slightly runny version of Silly Putty) and placing this goop in random areas on the course. I seemed nervous about my ability to accomplish this task and glanced at Dave in that "I'm-not-so-sure-about-this" way. And then....... I woke up.

What's so weird about all that? The fact that I am dreaming about another blogger who in fact lives in Israel. The fact that I can accurately dream about what he looks like because just 8 days ago I met him in person along with almost 20 other bloggers who live and blog in Israel. Can you see how entirely amazing that concept is? These are people that for the last 2 years I have been reading, admiring and have been inspired by to start my own blog. And I MET them! I went halfway around the world and got to shake hands and say, "hey, I like what you do; thanks for writing so that I have a better understanding of Israel and what it's like to live there. And thanks for the many laughs too". We were all brought together because we have a common element, and that is our love of Israel. And we all have a great respect for each other and the perspective we each bring to the conversation on that topic. I can safely say that the night we all got together and were able to puts faces to names and blogs was one of *the* happiest nights I can remember.

For anyone who blogs you know there are certain levels of popularity in the blogosphere, let's face it. There are blogs that I have looked up to in part because they are so highly regarded (and the traffic to their blogs reflects this) and in part because their writing is just so damn good. They are the gurus of your particular blogging circle (in this case the Israeli blogging circle). When going to the Blogger Bash I was actually worried about meeting some of these people! I was worried I would become a bumbling fan that could only spit out "I really like your blog!" when I finally got to shake their hands. As it turns out we were all equals there, and everyone was warm and welcoming and open. And while I was worried about being an outsider because I was the only Canadian blogger at an Israeli blogger meeting, I was actually singled out and "awarded the prize" for being the blogger who came the farthest. Indeed, I had gone to great lengths to make this meeting coincide with my trip, as I was extremely eager to meet everyone. And I received a very warm welcome into the fold.

There were lots of people there and somehow I didn't get around to meeting everyone that attended. Perhaps I didn't work enough at mingling, or maybe just got too caught up in my conversations with others. And then there were those who were sorely missed because they could not attend (Wadiuwant, Dutchblog Israel and Adventures in Jerusalem). Your absence left a notable hole in the attendance!
But in the end it was an experience that left a huge impression on everyone. And I can't help but think...what would my great grandmother think of this if she were still around? The fact that some crazy invention called the internet had brought a group of strangers together from all over the world to one location in the Middle East. I think she would be amazed, just as I am. I never lose sight of the fact that it was a wonderful set of circumstances that brought us together.

An article was written about the Bash and has been published in the online edition of Ha'Aretz; yes we had a reporter covering the event! If you would like to read it, you may find it here.
Oh! And I had a second dream last night about Dave....I dreamt that I woke up from the dream, saw Dave when I was out and about in my day and told him that he should read my blog because I was going to write about him and a crazy dream I had! Talk about life imitating dreams....