I was thinking the other day about the way in which making new friends has changed over the years.
When I was a child I made friends with children of neighbours, or others I met at school, and some of these have lasted a lifetime.
I made a fair number of friends during my working life too, and some of these I still have contact with.
When I moved to Turkey almost 16 years ago, I knew no-one except for my husband, and we moved around quite a lot so there wasn't much opportunity to make new friends, but I did gain a few along the way, and even though I don't have much chance to see them these days, we try to keep in touch.
The internet has been a boon for maintaining contact. I never really enjoyed writing letters, but these days we can chat via Skype or on Facebook, or we can phone or text each other. It's all so much easier.
Today there is a different kind of friendship that didn't exist before the internet. Making new friends online. Blogging has been a wonderful example of this. I have a great bunch of blogging friends. People who show an interest in my life and are always there to support me, and the enjoyment of our "chats" via the comment box.
I am amazed at the number of online friends I now have, that I haven't met in person. Although I have been fortunate enough to meet up with some of them over the past few years. The nice thing about eventually meeting them face to face, is that all the preliminary "getting to know all about you" stuff has already been done online, so we can just get on with enjoying each others' company.
Last Wednesday, the day of my disastrous visit to the dentist, I met up with one of my more recent online friends, David. He and his husband had been living in Gumusluk but recently moved to a village near Mumcular. It's early days of village life for him, but it looks like he is enjoying it immensely.
We first "spoke" on Facebook, on a group page, where we clearly shared the same opinions on certain things, and it progressed from there. Recently, he asked me to help him with Admin on a group page, which I was happy to do. We then started our own group and continue the admin together.
We had been planning to meet up for a while, so on Wednesday he kindly agreed to drive over to meet me in Milas. We spent a very pleasant couple of hours drinking coffee and chatting, before I set off for my dental appointment that didn't happen, and he returned home.
I feel like I've known him for years, and we plan to meet up regularly from now on.
Internet friendships are such an advantage for those like me, who live in areas where there is little opportunity to meet like-minded people. It helps to get rid of the feeling of isolation. It's even better when you eventually get to meet these new friends in real life.