Something I encourage everyone to do at least once in their life is to plan a trip and visit a friend. A lot of times life throws us curve balls and our dearest friends move away. At the time, these friends can be mere acquaintances or a work friend. You might not even feel close enough to the person to ask them to visit but let me be the first to tell you to just reach out and meet me in St. Louis.
A Friend In St. Louis
There are places that teach you things and others that feed you really well. There are also places where friendships can grow. For me, that city was St. Louis.
I was in the middle of my Year of Yes and dying to see Coldplay. I looked to see where they were playing for the A Head Full Of Dreams Tour. Narrowing down the list of cities, I knew someone in St. Louis but at the time had only worked with her. I was nervous about asking her to visit.
I wanted to create real-time connections, I was over staying in touch via social media. Luckily, this wonderful lady was disconnected from the social media world. We kept in touch the old fashioned way, by writing emails and calling each other. She taught me how to live life in the present.
I worked out the logistics and went to visit my then work friend Jackie in St. Louis.
I met her cat Ginger. (I hate cats. Butttt Ginger was cool…we had a mutual understanding–I was going to leave.)
We went to zoos and tourist spots, I went to the Coldplay concert by myself one night and then out to a fun arcade bar with her friends after the show.
We acted like kids in museums and realized our bodies were older and couldn’t slide down as fast as the kids next to us. She shared childhood memories and asked each other questions. We got to know each other outside of work and became really close.
She took me to all her favorite food spots and even cooked me a delicious meal. We talked, we laughed, we gave advice. I made a weekend out of it and three days felt like a week. We had so much fun and even planned her visit to Austin to visit me.
What had started as a plan for a concert in a new city, turned into a trip I would never forget. I came back home with a lifelong friend and a new Coldplay t-shirt.
So next time you’re missing someone or you’re wanting to call someone a friend, reach out to them and plan a trip. It can be in their hometown or in yours. You can meet halfway, you can meet across the ocean in a different country and go all over the world.
It doesn’t matter where you meet. What matters is that you make an effort to reach out and you connect with someone face-to-face and not on your feed.