There is a wonderful reward to blogging that has been mentioned by many, but I will say it again. It is the friendships that come out out of it! How you can connect with others whose face you may not see. I have enjoyed so much getting to know people from around the world!
What does this little introduction have to do with my adventure yesterday that I promised to tell you all about? Here is a clue.
This is lovely Gina, from the “Singledust” blog. https://alifelesslivedblog.wordpress.com/2019/01/17/the-highline-nyc/
She lives in Malaysia, but no, my husband and I did not hop a plane to Malaysia yesterday! Now if we would have had a spaceship where we could have just zoomed across the sky at high power than perhaps that would have been possible.
I met Gina on here over a year ago and was drawn to her sweet nature, her gentleness just came through in her writing and her positive spirit. Even though she had been through much loss, her joyful outlook on life inspired me. It was fun to chat together through our blogs and through emails. I never dreamed that I would actually get to meet her, for Malaysia is just a tad far away.
Well earlier this month she had told me in an email how she was coming to America to visit her sister and that she was also going to Washington D.C. When I heard that my heart jumped, we are only about 2 hours drive from D.C., we wouldn’t need a spaceship or a plane to get there! All I needed was a willing and capable driver, for I do not like city driving, especially in a city like D.C. My dear husband was more than happy to be my chauffeur, after all he wanted to make sure I got there safely. As well as him knowing what this visit meant to me.
We had planned on meeting for lunch at Mama Ayesha’s restaurant. When I walked in our eyes met and she quickly stood up to embrace me a warm hug. It felt so good and we just were in awe that we really were sitting at a table talking. That we weren’t behind a computer screen.
My husband soon came to join us, he had dropped me off and went to try to find a parking space which ended up being a couple blocks away. He had to walk in the cold, windy weather but he of course was smiling when he came in.
The food was delicious and the conversation was great, as we shared about ourselves with each other and talked about our different cultures. Gina also surprised us with gifts from Malayasia.
A beautiful table scarf or can be hung on the wall, a fan made from the bark of one of their native trees which she gave me the name of, but I can’t remember. I should have written it down. Also one of their special lanterns that they use, plus a keychain of one of their exotic birds and she gave my husband a special key chain as well . She also included special pencils as she told me to keep writing. Her thoughtfulness touched our hearts.
We weren’t ready to leave after lunch, so we looked around for things to do. Unfortunately with the government shutdown a lot of places were closed, like the Smithsonian. We did find that the Shakespeare Library museum was open and it was very interesting. It holds the world’s largest collection of Shakespeare’s writings. Any Shakespeare fans out there? I was one of the few who really enjoyed Shakespeare in High School when we studied his plays.
It did not just have to do with Shakespeare though. It also had things from the British Colonial times in the museum and talked about the different foods that were made back then and the background stories of some of the first chefs. How one slave rose to be a prominent chef, he had worked for President George Washington.
We saw a well known portrait painting of Shakespeare, only it wasn’t Shakespeare! Yes, for a number of years the painting was wrongly portrayed! It was actually the portrait of the governor of Virginia. How would you like your portrait in later years to become known as the portrait of someone famous? Who would you like to be identified as?
We also got to see the inside of a Folger’s theater. It was very nice, but we were not allowed to take pictures, as a play was being rehearsed while we were in there.
Did you know that Henry Folger got the idea about making coffee during the gold rush days? So many people were coming from all over to try and find gold and he thought that he would serve them coffee. It turns out that he made a lot more “gold” in his Folger’s Coffee, than many ever made who tried to find gold.
After hearing that story and walking back into the windy, cold air again we all thought that a coffee and gelato shop sounded like perfect as a place to warm up, and to enjoy more conversation. I should clarify that me and Gina thought coffee sounded good, my husband is not a coffee drinker, but he did like the gelato. Henry Folger would not have made money off of him back in the gold rush days.
We found it interesting as Gina talked about how she couldn’t understand seeing people drinking cold drinks. Especially when they walked outside in the cold weather. In Malaysia they basically only drink warm and hot drinks. No ice water, but hot water. It may sound strange to you, but it just shows how its all about the culture you are brought up in. We are all different and we can learn so much from each other.
In Malaysia its very rare for anyone to retire at 65, they work well into their 70’s and part time jobs are very hard to find, everything is full time. In the jungles of Malaysia you really can get lost. They say if you are not used to being in a jungle to not go in without a guide. Its not just in movies that it looks confusing and people get lost, it really happens. She said there have been many that sadly have not found their way out because of becoming so disoriented and people have had to go in and find them, and some have been found too late.
I always thought it would be fun to explore a jungle, but I will definitely make sure to have a guide if I ever have that opportunity. For I can easily get lost in a simple parking lot! Believe me, I am directionally challenged!
We also saw what Malaysian’s money looks like. We Americans are boring, we just have simple green bills. While Malyaisan bills are purple, pink and light blue. They even have flowers on them and a silky feel to them as well. I know money is money, but I do find it interesting to see money from other Countries.
Too soon the time came that we had to part ways, but I am so very thankful for the opportunity that we had to meet. Once again we embraced in a tender hug good bye and our hearts were warmed. Warmed at the blessing of friendship and how priceless it is. Warmed at the thought of how a simple blogging site like WordPress can bring together people of different races, and different faiths, from all different places. How we can form a bond through words typed on a screen.
I feel blessed and can’t wait for the opportunity to meet more bloggers. To not just have a virtual coffee chat, but a real one. Oh what an adventure blogging has turned out to be!
Thank you Gina for your friendship, for being so dear!