I have been thinking this evening about the friends I have made around the internet during the time I have been writing an online journal. All sorts of people, from all over the world. Younger people, older people, different races, religions, cultures and backgrounds.
The written word is quite wonderful really — it has the ability to subtract physical appearance, wealth, and location — leaving the really important things on the table — thoughts, ideas, dreams, hopes and stories.
I’ve always been a sucker for a great story. When I have time to sit down and catch up with the various blogs I follow, I become enthralled with the stories. The everyday stories, experiences, and reflections. The small things.
Tolkien once wrote “it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay”. I think he was right. Through our shared stories we remind each other that we are not alone — that there are others like us out there. They might be half a world away, but the magic of the internet reduces the distance to a voice in our ear, a face in our hand, and hope in our heart.
I’m also aware that I sometimes go for months without reaching out to those I have known for so long — months without letting them know that I still read, I still follow, and I still care. I need to work on that.