Travel Blogging and Friends Met Along the Journey

Travel Blogging and Friends Met Along the Journey

Throughout my travels, I have been fortunate enough to meet some of the world’s most interesting and incredible people. These people, from all over, have opened my eyes to the world and my heart to understanding how little separates us.

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Even early on in my travels, meeting people was one of my favorite aspects of being on the road. But, once I started travel blogging, the idea of meeting people through travel began to grow in ways I never anticipated. I started writing because it was one of my greatest passions, and I wanted to share my love of travel with the world. I had no idea it would connect me with so many others who shared that love.

Through social media, I began to create meaningful relationships with people on-line, but last November I took it a step further by meeting a few of my fellow bloggers for brunch. I was excited and nervous all at once about meeting people I had only known because of the Internet.

Photo Credit: Mrs. O.

Photo Credit: Mrs. O.

Immediately, my nerves were set at ease once I sat down with the people I knew so well through our conversations on social media and reading their blogs, even if this was the first time we were meeting in person. It felt strangely familiar to finally come together with them, as if we had actually been friends for years and just hadn’t seen each other for a while.

Over the past year, I have continued to meet up with other people in the travel world, many of whom I had first developed a relationship with on-line. Whether it was meeting up at the New York Times Travel Show, or sharing a house at TBEX in Toronto, each experience has been special and exciting. The connections I have built with these people have become bonds that will last forever, and without starting this blog, they would have never happened.

Photo Credit: Lola

Photo Credit: Lola

Unfortunately, this week, the travel blogging world lost someone truly special, and I lost someone I had grown to think of as a friend. Anita was a sparkle of sunshine, someone always willing to give a helping hand or a smile when one was needed. She was a beautiful person inside and out, with one of the biggest hearts I’ve known someone to have. Not everything in Anita’s life was easy, but she was always looking forward to her next adventure. She was upbeat and smiling, even when things were hard, and that’s what I’ll remember most about her.

Photo Credit: Anita

Photo Credit: Anita

I met Anita in person for the first time at the New York Times Travel Show, and we developed a friendship outside of blogging. There were times she sensed I needed a friend and was willing to be there for me, even though we barely knew each other. We came together again in Toronto for TBEX, and most recently for our girl’s getaway in Montreal, and I feel so lucky to have had all that time with her during our short friendship.

Photo Credit: Anita

Photo Credit: Anita

I know many people in the community will miss her smiling face and adventurous spirit. For now, I am so grateful that I have been blessed to know her, even if it was only for a short time, and I am so thankful for everyone I’ve been able to meet through travel and travel blogging; each and every one of them will forever hold a place in my heart.

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Comments (40)

  1. Eileen

    Beautiful tribute to her.

    1. The World Wanderer

      Thanks, Eileen! She was a beautiful person. So glad to have had her in my life.

    1. The World Wanderer

      Aww, I love you too, Lola! xx Thanks for everything, seriously, you are an amazing friend.

  2. Lance | Trips By Lance

    Thanks for writing this. Anita became one of my biggest supporters soon after I started blogging this spring. She was a big help, often serving as a sounding board. I loved hanging out with her in Toronto and was looking forward to seeing her on future travels. She was such a good friend, even though we hadn’t known each other that long.

    1. The World Wanderer

      Lance, I completely agree. All of a sudden, I saw her commenting on my posts, always offering up support and kind words. I was so happy to finally meet her in New York and I realized immediately that that kindness was not only behind a computer screen, but her true personality. She was an amazing person, and we are so blessed to have had her in our lives.

    2. Mary Anne

      It was great we all got to connect and be a part of her life.

  3. Leona gray

    Thank you so much for writing this. As a cycling friend of Anita’s in Ottawa, I’m totally reeling over what has happened. We’ve all lost a wonderful person.

    1. The World Wanderer

      I know, Leona, so am I. Anita, was truly such a special person, one who touched so many lives – probably more than she even realized.

  4. Mary Anne

    Erin, I love you. I am happy we have connected and you make a great point. I told someone just yesterday that though we haven’t all known each other very long, traveling together and experiencing things together and relying on each other brings us close quickly and that is a bond that isn’t broken easily. We were truly blessed to experience Anita’s love, and we are blessed to have each other in life and travels.

    1. The World Wanderer

      Aww, Mary Anne, you brought me to tears. I love you too, and I’m so grateful to have you as one of my friends. It’s amazing how this whole thing has brought so many amazing people into my world, into all of our worlds. It wasn’t what I was looking for, or expecting, but it’s an additional bonus that has made my life better. I’m so glad we had that weekend to share with Anita, it brought us all closer together for sure, and we’ll always have those memories.

  5. Helen

    Hi Erin,

    I’m so sorry to hear about your friend. What a beautiful tribute.

    Helen x

    1. The World Wanderer

      Thanks so much, Helen! She was really special and wonderful. So glad we had the time together that we did. She always made sure to bring everyone up, and I’m so grateful for the memories I made with her.

  6. Nita

    Hi Erin. This is such a beautiful post and a fitting tribute to Anita. I never got a chance to meet her in person but always felt her kindness and support through our social media interactions. She was one of the first friends I made on Twitter. The world lost a sweet and wonderful person, but we will always remember her.

    1. The World Wanderer

      Thanks so much, Nita. She was a great friend and person overall, and it’s so nice to see what a positive impact she had on those around here, whether she met them in person or on-line. I know we’ll never forget her or the way she made people feel.

  7. Leah Travels

    Well done, Erin. This would make Anita smile.

  8. Keryn @ walking on travels

    I am so sorry to hear that a member of our community is gone, especially such a kind and wonderful woman who lifted up those around her. She will not be forgotten.

    1. The World Wanderer

      Thanks for your kind words, Keryn. I know she will be missed by so many.

  9. Adirondack Kim

    VERY nice, Erin; a wonderful tribute.

  10. Ian Ord - Where Sidewalks End

    A beautiful tribute, Erin. I never got the chance to meet Anita, but feel the gravity of her loss both in the community and in your writing. I feel very fortunate to have met you (and finally in person) through our blogs! Stay strong and keep inspiring people through your passions. Big hugs! xx

    1. The World Wanderer

      Thanks, Ian for the wonderful words! I am so happy we have met both on-line and in person. I think Thailand is calling my name for a visit very soon. Thanks for all of your support! xx

  11. Crazy sexy fun traveler

    I’m so sorry! I will always remember her smile too. Miss you!

    1. The World Wanderer

      I miss you too! Thanks, Alex. So glad we got to meet in person and share the TBEX house. xx

  12. @mrsoaroundworld

    This is so sweet, I am sure Anita would have loved it. I also loved meeting you – not once but twice.. and something tells me there will be more to come!

    1. The World Wanderer

      Thanks, Mrs. O! I loved meeting you too, and look forward to our future meetings. xx

  13. Paul Farrugia (globalhelpswap)

    I have just found out about Anita. I am so shocked. I was hoping to meet her in Dublin. Beautiful post Erin. Take care xxx

    1. The World Wanderer

      I know, Paul, I’m still in shock too. So sad you didn’t get to meet her in person, but she was just as lovely as she had always been on-line.

  14. the lazy travelers

    thanks for posting this, erin. we have all become so intricately connected to each other– it’s hard to explain to people outside of our little community. this is a fitting tribute to anita and to the friendships we’ve formed over the past two years. i am so lucky to have met her, you, and so many others. I LOVE YOU!! xo, the wino

    1. The World Wanderer

      I’m so lucky to have met you too! I know that this week has been especially hard for those of us who had a friendship with Anita and spent time with her, like we did in NY and Toronto. I’ll never forget the memories we’ve formed together. I’m so grateful for this supportive community of people I’ve come to see as friends. Hard to believe that without this blog, we wouldn’t know each other! I love you too!!! xxxx

  15. Tawny of Captain and Clark

    I know it’s been a tough week for a lot of us. Travel blogging has given us so much and Chris and I are so incredibly grateful for the love and support that we have found in our fellow travel bloggers. This is a beautiful tribute to Anita. She is missed and I only wish we could have spent more time together. Love you! xo

    1. The World Wanderer

      I agree, Tawny! So glad we were able to share some moments in the house with her, just with there was more together time. I am looking forward to seeing you in less than two weeks! It will feel so good to be reunited. So grateful for you and Chris, and everyone else I have met along this journey. xx

  16. Kieu ~ GQ trippin

    Beautiful post, Erin. It’s been a tough week and my heart has been heavy. But I am grateful I had the chance to meet Anita. I will always remember her smile. I am thankful Gerard and I are a part of such a wonderful community that connects us with all of you. It’s a bond I’m quite proud to show off.. my friends from all parts of the world. 🙂

    1. The World Wanderer

      Thanks, Kieu! So glad we had time with Anita in the house. It really is great to have this community and to have met so many wonderful people because of it. So happy I’ve met the two of you! xx

  17. D.J. - The World of Deej

    One of the great things about this blogging business, you know, except for the pay:) are the people we meet along the way. While we haven’t met in real life – unless you count Flat Deej – I’m honored to call you a comrade in arms!

    1. The World Wanderer

      Haha, well pay is first and foremost. 😉 Then friends! Yes, I know, I still can hardly believe we haven’t met. I guess I forget because Flat Deej was so life-like. 😉

  18. Rik Freeman

    WOW, what a wonderful tribute, I am only new to your blog site via Twitter and have been amazed by what I have read and seen. Keep going, your an inspiration to so many others out there and with the power of the internet and stuff the memory of Anita will stay strong wherever you are. All the very best to you. 🙂

    1. The World Wanderer

      Thank you so much, Rik! So glad you’ve found me. 🙂

      It’s funny, now when I travel, I see pieces of Anita wherever I go. It’s nice to know she’s watching over me.

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