Living and working in the mining fraternity for almost three decades, I've met many people and made many friends. Often Grant and I have arrived at a site, and met up with people whom we've known on another mine site.
This happened to me in 2001 when Grant and I flew from Mali to Guinea where he took up the position of Plant Manager of a remote site in the northern part of the country. As I walked towards our house, I saw a lady wave from the house next door. Thrilled, I realised that it was Sonja, whom I'd met three months previously when she and her husband, Karel were on the same flight as I from Johannesburg via Abidjan to Bamako. On our brief stopover in the capital of Cote d' Ivoire, Sonja and I got chatting. She is almost 14 years younger than I but I found her very mature and friendly. In Guinea, as neighbours, we became firm friends and continued to keep in contact with e-mails, when later she and I were in seperate countries. At the moment she and Karel (who's a project manager) are living in Tanzania so we're virtually neighbours again!
When Grant and I flew up to Kenya in September, we stayed over at a hotel in Johannesburg. Grant and Karel arranged to meet in the foyer and of course, Karel brought Sonja along too! We'd not seen them in six years but it felt as if we'd never been apart. While the men talked shop (mining) on the one side, Sonja and I caught up on family news (believe it or not, she's a grandmother of two little girls) and people we'd both known in the mining community.
My long-time friend, Sonja and I when we met in Johannesburg last month
When I arrived home in South Africa, I found a card from fellow-blogger, Becky. How lovely it was to actually see her handwriting and get to "know" her through this medium. Becky, whom I met through another dear blogger-friend's blog, Kay, has been a great source of inspirition to me in my writing. You can read Becky's blog here. Kay, too has been a stalwart in supporting me in my writing. (Thanks Kay!)
A handwritten note from Becky was waiting on my desk at home in South Africa when I arrived home (Thank you, Becky!)
So between living the expat life and blogging, I count myself blessed to have many friends around the world. Thank you to all who've become my friends through cyberspace!
May you all have a wonderful week.