This is the one about relocating and a renewed love for my online community.

A Hand drawn picture of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco

I relocated to the San Francisco Bay area from Phoenix last fall.  And to be quite honest, Phoenix sucked.  Sorry Phoenix.  Everything here has flavor and color that I had been missing for the past five years while living in the desert.

I was talking to a friend in Phoenix a couple weeks after moving here and she asked, “Are you having culture shock?”

I told her that it’s more like “Culture. Shock!”  I’m more shocked that there is culture.  And I love it.

One of the negative things that came with selling all my furniture and packing up my car and moving was that I lost the ability to call up a friend and just run out to grab a cup of coffee or a beer. Wait…why do all of my social activities revolve around liquids?!?

A drawing of a human heart with a friend-sized holeThis is where social media filled in the friend-sized hole in my heart.

Because of the connections that I’ve made online with friends all over the country (including the friends that I made in Phoenix), this transition has been easier for me.  When I’m wondering what my friends Brian & Curtis are up to, I can just put in my earbuds and listen to their podcast.  When I want to know what Megan decided to wear on Halloween, I can see the pictures on Facebook.

And my network of friends has been good for me in more than just the keep-in-touch sort of away.  As I’ve explored my new world, I’ve tweeted and photographed the experience and have had people make restaurant and hiking suggestions.  I’ve met up people like Scott, Christina, Landileigh and Peter – people I’ve only known virtually and now live in the same area.

I’m not at the point where I can say that social networking can replace the friends that we make in the physical world, but they’ve certainly made a difficult transition easier.

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