Some of the TB's Who Have Impacted My Life
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Here are a few of the TravBuddies I have met over the past year who have impacted my life and become some of my closest friends. They are in order of meeting them not importance! LOL.
Well, it's no secret that Melanie would be on this list! Not surprising she is also one of the first TB's I met back at the Los Angeles meet up in December 2007 but we really did not become close until after the first Vegas meet up in March. People think we've been friends for years but in truth, we've almost known each other one year! LOL. Obviously we've traveled together and almost been roommates since she puts up with me for weeks at a time while I am visiting Vegas. We are often known as the Mel and Erin show and I think it's hilarious! As long as our antics, pictures, and blogs continue to bring smiles to people, we will keep posting our crazy adventures.
Roger (x_drive) and Judy (Hummingbird)
Roger and Judy were in attendance at the first Los Angeles meet up and the subsequent San Francisco meet up in January. They are incredibly awesome people and like my adopted parents (lucky for them though I haven't come to them for help like I do with my own parents....ha ha).
I was lucky enough to see them again a few months ago on one of my road trips back from Las Vegas. I wish I had been able to stay longer but enjoyed hanging out with them in their home and seeing the real lives behind the infamous x_drive profile! Roger and I actually grew up in the same city and he was one of the first people to tell me about the LA meet up and why I should come! He and Judy are also the reason I went to visit the Columbia Gorge waterfalls earlier this year (although my blog still isnt' done on that trip!)
Angel and I met at the Los Angeles meet up in December as well.
Tracy and I met at the original LA meet up in December 07 as well.
Will and I started talking a few days after I joined TB because I saw him on the list of Bdays for that day and saw he lived in Vegas.
Everyone knows Mark of course - he's the king of TB meet ups! :D Mark and I met at the original LA meet up Dec 2007 and have since met up again in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Kansas City, and the biggest one of all - a week in Belize. What a great time! And now, we will be cohosting the annual meet up in October down there. We've bonded over Belikins, Barrel One rum, chicken poop, and crazy golf cart adventures! LOL. Can't wait for our 2nd annual event next year! Maybe we can incorporate your performance at the Kansas City meet up into our Belize adventures..maybe Dennis Wolfe will let you perform alongside him! LOL
And let's not forget...the biggest of the big meet ups are yet to come - Ket's Dec 30th Idols meet up and the NYE AMS party boat.
I met Julz at the San Francisco meet up and like with Angel, we instantly clicked. She was there with her cousin Leah (Leah151) who was also a blast to chat with. Julz and I found we had a lot in common...mostly with our adoration for men with lots of ink!! HAHA.
Julz and I kept in touch and partied together again in March for the Vegas meet up. Getting together with her, Angel, and Melanie was just a crazy combination! We had such a good time and I couldn't wait to see her again....and I didn't have to wait long! LOL. We road tripped down to Los Angeles for the May meet up and that was an adventure unlike any other. Julz is forever known as the Squirrel Whisperer after that trip!
Since then, Julz and I have gotten together more often for Bay Area adventures and I am looking forward a real vacation next year with her! She's been by my side through a lot this year and her friendship means the world to me!!!
Besides being my "PIW" (partner in wine) - Joy is just an amazing person.
Seeing her so happy now with meeting Rob (Robthetraveler) off the site warms my heart. She's a great person and deserves all the happiness in the world. I've seen her a couple times since and hope to catch up with her my next trip down to LA!!
Heinz was actually the first TravBuddy I spoke to on the site.
I was very excited to finally get to meet him at the March meet up and say hi to the first TB I really had contact with. Heinz is a very kind, generous, and wonderful person....although not a good listener!! Dress code for meet up: No sneakers Heinz!!! HAHAHA :-)
Initially, Sal and I did not have much of an opportunity to talk at the Las Vegas meet up in March but we became close at the LA meet up in May.
Sal and I also have some more fun to look forward to before year end as we will be meeting up in Europe to do a little country hopping and ring in the New Year in Amsterdam with 100 of our closest friends! HAHA.
Hmmm, where do I begin about RJ?!?! We barely talked at the March Las Vegas meet up but became closer friends at mini meet ups and just getting together whenever I would come to town.
Being around RJ - you can't help but smile and have a great time.....he always lights up the table with his infectious smile and I thoroughly enjoyed our mini meet up on the flight to the Kansas City! He managed to diffuse Mel and I who were cranky and sleep deprived the morning we arrived at the airport. We've had some fun times and I am really looking forward to meeting up in AMS with him around the holidays - another country for us to invade!!! :-) Plus, we have an overdue pool rematch! Watch out RJ..I am gonna win this time! LOL
James and I met at March Las Vegas meet up and didn't have much of an opportunity to talk but we certainly did at the Kansas City meet up he cohosted in June.
It's been a rough year for some of us and it's always good to know you have people you can lean on and talk to. James has been such a good friend and although he likes to run around with "Jose", he's redeemed himself and is one of my definite Partners in Wine! James and I have the best bonding trip to look forward to yet as we break in the new year together in Europe....we will be visiting several countries and now even flying back from AMS to Houston together which I am sure we will create some havoc on! Can't wait and all the other adventures we will embark on in 2009!
Shane, Shane, Shane.
I got to see Shane again in July on my 6 hour layover on the way to Alaska. He was kind enough to come get me from the airport and we spent all afternoon at a restaurant chatting and catching up on his recent trip to Indonesia (thanks again for the awesome gifts you brought back for me) and it was nice. Although we don't talk for hours every day like we used to, he knows he's still one of my good friends and I look forward to future adventures together.
I have to admit I was very nervous about meeting Jillian even though we had talked on the site quite a bit. Here we were going to road trip and spend the weekend together at Joy's and we've never even talked on the phone - just traded voicemails!!! LOL. She was at Julz' house already and when we met, instant friends! We had such a great time on our weekend trip, especially the trip back home! 16 hours in a car with her and Julz is one way to determine whether you can remain friends or not!! HAHA. Jillian had me in tears the whole way home from her silliness and crazy antics. The road trip home had so much to it that my blog is literally just an entry of various Jillian quotes and recaps from the day.
Our subsequent trip to San Francisco with Julz, Sal, and David was also a repeat of the great times only weeks before in Los Angeles! And after Sal and David left, us girls had a great day of bonding! Jillian was one of the ones who was first to console me when things got really rough at work and most of my friends were laid off with no notice.
I had heard so much about Alice and couldn't wait to meet her and see her unofficial TravBuddy cookies! I finally got the opportunity to meet her on the pre meet up Hookah night in the May meet up. She's one of the nicest and most generous people I've ever met.
In addition to Alice practically being a saint, she is an incredible cook and baker! OMG....she is seriously our resident gourmet. She is my resource for recipes and pairing ideas and thus far, she's never led me astray! Watch out though..hanging around Alice will blow your diet! LOL
I met Melissa at the May meet up in LA originally but had heard lots of great things about her from Melanie beforehand.
Since that weekend, I've seen Melissa a number of times on trips back to Vegas and we embarked on our bonding weekend road trip to AZ just a few weeks ago. Melissa has become a good friend and I really enjoy our foodie, fro yo, and cupcake adventures together. She's a super loyal friend and always willing to do for others (when she's not having a princess moment...LOL). She's put up with a lot from me, especially on our road trip and she's still my friend so I am a lucky girl! :-)
Adrian and I began talking his first day on the site and I found him very easy to talk to.
He's been quite a rock for me through some hard times and emotional upheavels and I owe him for that. And of course, he knows he will always hold a special place in my heart for his matchmaker skills.....whether it was inadvertant or not, he knows I am incredibly grateful.
Tim and I had been chatting for sometime online prior to the KC meet up about potentially traveling together in 09. I've since figured out that Tim might be a little too adventurous for me (white water rafting in Iceland?!?!?!) but perhaps lower key adventures like our meet ups will work just as well!!! LOL. Tim started talking to me after I won a couple awards in a row and gave me grief about whether I was going to continue adding content to the site....be careful what you wish for, huh Tim? Now he teases me about the amount of stuff (mainly pics) that I post!
As we prepare for 2009, something tells me I will be seeing more of Tim...perhaps no white water rafting or snake rangling but I am thinking a nice dinner in Mexico might work, what about you Tim? :P Thanks for being such a good friend and always looking out for me.
My East Coast Girls - Julie (Pinchora) and Dana (Jerseygirl67)
I met both Julie and Dana before the September Las Vegas meet up and OMG...these two are crazy! We instantly hit it off and I really enjoyed the time we all spent together before and after the meet up. It was very sad saying goodbye to Dana Sunday and then Julie on Monday. We tried to convince Julie to stay a little longer but she her dedication to work won her over!
We've already started making plans to all see each other again soon! I'm looking forward to some of the plans we are already talking about for 2009 and thanks for being there for me through thick and thin....you both have seen me at my best and worst and are still friends with me so that says a lot! LOL
Brett and I had talked a couple times only back and forth on the site and we started messaging a little more as the September Las Vegas meet up approached.
Suffice it to say, life is good and I could not be happier! I managed to charm Brett into coming back out for our glorious road trip to Tucson a couple weeks ago and we had a really wonderful adventure with Melanie and Melissa! Now I am preparing for my lengthy visit for the holidays in a couple weeks....hopefully he will still like me after 25 days together! HAHA We are going to do some country hopping with some other TBs, I am attending his Bday Bash meet up on 12/13, and of course, we are attending the biggest of the big TB meet ups for NYE in Amsterdam! Whoo Hoo!!! :D :D :D