As the sign at the Natural Gardener in Austin, Texas says, “Life’s a journey, enjoy it”.
For many gardeners, our journey is often from the garden shed to the vegetable garden and over to the perennial border, and maybe out the garden gate to the public facing view of our gardens and up the street to the local garden center.
We didn’t think of a journey that went much further.
But we knew we wanted to share more of our gardens, so we started garden blogs and found others online who were like us, who loved gardening and plants and sharing about them with others.
And we were content to correspond through our blogs and emails with these other gardeners from across the country and even around the world. We journeyed through each others’ gardens virtually, enjoying, cajoling, and encouraging each other along the way through comments and occasional emails.
Then someone (Pam) suggested perhaps we should journey further, perhaps we should actually meet some of the gardeners and see some of the gardens we have been reading about online, that we’ve written about wanting to see.
And so we did just that, and more, at the Garden Bloggers’ Spring Fling in Austin, Texas.
And the world of garden blogging is transformed once more.
More to follow in the days to come.
Lisa at Greenbow says
So good to read that you are back home again in Indiana. Can’t wait to read all about your journey and to see loads of pictures.
As always, love the words you pen errr… type to describe the thoughts we have about gardening. Can’t wait to hear the tales of your journey to Austin… and the meet-ups… and the Spring Flinging!
Thanks for helping those of us who weren’t able to attend feel part of Spring Fling! I’m so looking forward to your future posts.
What a journey it was, even for those of us who didn’t leave our hometown. Carol, I am so very glad to have met you in person. I told you I’d never read your blog in the same way again, and that’s true. You’re no longer a friendly stranger to me but a friend.
So true. So true. You’ve written an excellent distillation of this experience. And I must echo Pam’s sentiment as well. A transformation has occurred among those of us who have met face-to-face.
When talking to my non-blogging friends and family, I’d often refer to something a “blog-friend” had “said”. I would get that odd look that translated to “How can you be friends with someone you’ve never met?”
Well now our relationship needs no qualification. I can say, “My friend, Carol.”
There is always something to learn in another persons garden!
I’m really enjoying reading about the meeting from all the different bloggers involved. And I’m finding lots of new blogs at the same time!
I don’t know about your trip home on the planes, but the four AM departure from the hotel turned us into zombies for the rest of the day. But when the photos taken in Austin were viewed, the happiness returned and will be with us always. So glad to meet you and the rest.
Can’t wait to hear more about your trip!
Robin's Nesting Place says
It sounds like the Spring Fling was a resounding success. I’m so glad everyone had fun and I can’t wait to hear more.
What a journey and to meet so many wonderful blogging friends, worth the airport hassles! I so very much enjoyed meeting you and having an opportunity to grow a friendship.
It sounds as though your trip was well worth it. I’m looking forward to reading your posts about it this week.
kate smudges says
I can only imagine the joy of meeting the bloggers behind the words – Spring Fling must have been wonderful.
I am looking forward to hearing more about your time at Spring Fling.
Beautifully written Carol! Sentiments shared by so many of us in the blogging world. I am looking forward to more posts on your trip and impressions of gardens and gardeners alike!
Mr. McGregor's Daughter says
It sounds like you enjoyed it as much as I did. It was so great to meet you – now when I read your blog, I hear it in my head in your voice. This was a transformative (is that a word?) experience.
Annie in Austin says
The only reason it was even possible to say goodbye to you, Carol, is that we know how to find you at May Dreams.
Carol Michel says
All, Thank you for the comments and kind words. I’m sure over the next week, much will be written and posted about the spring fling, a great experience and fun time had by all.
Carol, May Dreams Gardens
“How can you be friends with someone you’ve never met?” I’ll tell you how: they’re called pen pals, and they’ve been around almost as long as pens. What handwriting a letter and waiting for the return letter lacked in instant gratification it made up for with the greater anticipation. In the Garden Bloggers Book Club we’ve already read Elizabeth Lawrence and Katharine White’s correspondence. They were friends for years before they met. Same idea, different medium.
Thank you, Carol, for venturing forth and joining us.
We’re so glad you journeyed so far to come Fling with us all. It was wonderful to put names with faces and blogs and gardens. I also love your post about “packing” ideas with which to return home. I,too, loved the stones at the David/Peese garden, and you passalongs all sound wonderful. Maybe I will get to see you in IN some day.
I followed your link from today's post and am delighting in your Spring Fling post and our comments from 3 years ago. It WAS a transformative experience to meet everyone in person, and it's still a bit incredible to me that the Flings are continuing. I look forward to renewing our friendship again this summer in Seattle.