I didn't have the kind of experience at university that means I make pilgrimages across the country a few times of year to meet up with a gang of people I lived, breathed and worshipped my university course/sports team/church group/society committee with. When I finally got around to being a graduate with a low paying job in an office of 4, living in an infinitely shitty room with my partner in the arse end of the East End, I suddenly realised that as an adult I was going to have to go out there and make some friends. Because visiting my crazy Aunts in Finchley once a month does not a social life make.
Blogging can be a great platform for meeting people- in 2012 it seemed it was the height of the brand event and launch party. I made an effort to try and go to things even if I didn't feel like it, because making friends requires effort. I tried going to the 30th birthday parties I'd never normally feel comfortable at, I went to bars I hated, tried to make nice with over entitled students who thought Army office training would mean they were a step above everyone else and their petty problems and discovered I am not what you'd call naturally sociable, but I do very much prefer to have a glass in my hand when attempting it.
Feeling jaded and worn out, 2015 was the year I gave up on playing nicely. I have a few incredible friends and I couldn't face more evenings being snubbed, more tedious waffle about how terribly important the hardship of Sandhurst is (FYI, I know, my partner completed office training, he just doesn't feel the need to discuss it at every juncture) or disasters left behind because someone drinks to much and offends someone else. TL;DR.... making friends is hard work.
Last weekend, I broke my streak of reclusive, jaded brooding and did something I haven't done in just over a year. I went to a blogger event. I wandered on down to the Fable in Holborn and got stuck into learning about Nespresso as part of the #coffeewithcurrys event and maybe it was something to do with the cocktails (there's rather a few action shots of me at the cocktail station actually...), but I left having had a damn good day.
No more than 25 people milling around, different activity stations (cocktail making first for me, what can I say) that were low pressure and well organised, no obtrusive loud music, it even turned out I knew or had met a few of the other bloggers and they didn't pretend not to know me- bonus.
I got learn about how we taste coffee and that I've obliterated the bitter part of my palette because I enjoy my coffee strong. I almost broke one of the coffee machines (sorry Haydy & Holly....) and got a bit obsessed by the idea of a very neat little machine that would take up about a quarter of the space of my filter coffee machine AND comes from a company dedicated to going above and beyond Fair Trade standards and basic recycling.
Most of all, I looked at the photos the lovely organiser Haydy sent through this week and realised that this shot sums up my day....
I left relaxed and happy. I had a lot of fun. I met some interesting people who didn't ask me if my blog was my full time job before asking my name, and I had a lot of fun (as well as deciding a Nespresso machine is now very much on my wishlist).