Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Meeting people via the internet etc.

Times have definitely changed. When I started University back in the mid-90’s, I remember sitting in one of the computer labs with my friend Rebecca and we were actually bamboozled about how to use the internet.

Now in 2009 I look back and I can remember Rebecca and I trying to use the internet; it was a slow and painful process. Given the fact that now I usually have an internet browser open for most of my work day; I can’t even believe that we did not know how to use it.

Where would I be without the internet? Well I wouldn’t be married for starters and I would not have found life-time friend with common interests.

I thought that I could list a chronological history of my internet usage.

Late 90’s - my parents decided to get the internet at home. This opened up a huge world of opportunities for me! I joined Yahoo and started using their chat rooms to talk to people from all around the world. This was an amazing feat in itself. Yes, there were dodgy people out there, however for the most part the people that I came in contact with were interesting and fun.

Early-Mid 2000 – I found some really genuine, lovely people with common interests in US chat rooms. On a whim I decided to visit them for Christmas. This was a massive exploit in itself as I had not been to the USA before, had not met these people and had never spent a Christmas away from home. So on the 1st December 2000 I boarded a flight to LA. Once in LA I flew to Chicago and then on to Detroit. I was met by my “internet” buddy Will and we drove to his home in Reading, Michigan. Aside from being homesick in parts, I had a wonderful trip and met some great people. We had a crazy girl’s weekend in Ohio in the snow and danced the night away in various clubs. I spent a night in a motel room that was reminiscent of a cheap Hollywood horror with a big slash through the door!

2001 – I stumbled across a Yahoo group for New Zealand fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I had discovered Buffy when I was flatting; I kept my addiction to Buffy a secret for fear of being hassled for what could be considered a TV show for teenagers/children. Crazily enough I ended up using Buffy as part of a work speech.

This Yahoo group opened a huge door for me and many of the people that I met through this group have remained some of my closest friends. These are people who I feel comfortable with, and have also made me realise that I can see the deeper meanings in Movies, Books and TV shows.

I remember the first time I went to Kerry and Dave’s house; I was so nervous! I left that day feeling contented and happy after watching a lot of Buffy. I got home with a huge stack of Buffy videos so that I could catch up while the group waited for the next episodes of Buffy to arrive on video from a friend of Kerry’s in the USA. Thank you so much akldscoobies and nzscoobies you opened a door to “Narnia” and a world I would have surely missed had I not found you.

2001-2003 – While I have had a lot of wonderful experiences with meeting people on the internet, there have been a fair few nasty experiences that have balanced things out. I do not honestly know if I wanted to meet a partner on the internet, or if it was more that I just wanted to have some fun. I would say that 95% of the men I met were normal guys with no psychological problems; the other 5% what can I say?? Some were just plan nasty and scary human beings.

2002 – I moved in with a good friend Angela who I met through Buffy and we had a great time flatting with her sister in Avondale.

February 2003 – This marked a huge turning point in my life. I changed roles within the company that I worked for and decided to sell my car on Trade Me. While on Trade Me I found a NZ dating site (Findsomeone). I met a number of people through this site, and on about the 16th of February I got a message from a guy who lived in Wellington. Incidentally, Angela and I had just come back from a fun “up your bum Valentine’s day” weekend in Wellington. We started sending messages back and forth, and then started talking on the phone. Mark then threw in his job in Wellington and moved to Auckland (apparently he did not move up here for me...). We met in April 2003 in Hamilton. We moved in together in September 2003 and while there have been numerous ups and downs; we have been married for over a year and have been together for almost 6.5 years.

2008/2009 – I found Facebook, and connected with old school/university friends that I had lost touch with. While Facebook does not take the place of face-to-face contact or phone calls, it does provide a quick way to keep up-to-date with what happening with friends and family.

May 2009 – I discovered Twitter after listening to the Morning Madhouse and Jay-Jay and Dom raving about Twitter. I joined, and for the first couple of weeks I wondered what the big deal was about. Then all of a sudden I discovered NZ people using the site and over the past few weeks of July/August I have really learnt to LOVE Twitter.

It seems crazy to me that about 10 years ago I struggled to use the internet, and 2008/2009 has opened the door for me to social networking sites, blogs and just in the last day or so RSS Feeds. It makes me wonder what 2010+ will bring.

1 comment:

  1. This is an excellent blog concept... I may have to steal this one day (full credit given of course :) )