One of the things that Justin and I have been struggling with is that it’s really hard to make friends at this age when we don’t have children. At least, that seems to be a key factor. If you moved into the area and don’t have children to help make a connection with other people, it’s really hard to break into a group of people and make friends.
We thought we were making progress with people from church. And we do get along well with several people at church and chat amiably with them when we see them on Sundays or when we run into them other times. But apparently when I stopped going to one Bible study and joined another, that was highly offensive to a family we through were friends. And since the end of August when I made that change, the wife of that couple has yet to have a full conversation with either Justin or myself. So we don’t really know what the full situation is, but it was upsetting and frustrating and made us think that we needed to explore other venues to find friends. (Again, not that we don’t like the people at church and get along with many of them when we see them. Just that we might want to expand our search for people who would befriend us. I mean, really. We’ve been at the church for 2 years. We should have made friends there by now.)
So I started an intense search for geeks in our area. I mentioned back in August that it’s hard to find geeks because we tend to stay inside, out of the sun, in front of our computers. If you’re lucky, though, you can find their trail online.
Around the beginning of September, I found a group of geeks in the area and started poking around on their website. They have a site for planning gatherings and chatting. So I stuck my nose in and said that we’d love to meet people in the group. And a bunch of other people thought it’d be fun, too, so at the beginning of October, we had a party. For 10 hours. It was AWESOME. We sat around chatting and playing games and munching on food. There was fighting with foam swords. We played “Apples to Apples” for about 5 hours. I almost hyperventilated laughing. It was a fantastic day.
Justin and I have emailed back and forth with several people in the group since then. We’re getting together with another couple for dinner. We’re planning another party at the end of the month. Another guy wants to get together with Justin so they can duel with shinai.
I’m hopeful about it. Sad as it is, gamer geeks tend to be more accepting than people at church. The day of the party, there were multiple discussion about political and religious views and the group has opinions across the whole scale. But no one got upset about opposing views, outside of their discussion. I mean, there were some pretty heated discussions, but at the end, everyone was still willing to be friends. So I’m hopeful that we’ll be able to fit in because of that acceptance.
I’m also looking at a book club through the library. There’s a science fiction / fantasy book club starting at the end of October and I’m planning to attend. Maybe I can find more girls who’d be willing to sit down and chat about literature and more sedate geeky-ness than hitting one anther with swords, foam or otherwise. I’m looking forward to the meeting.
And it’s nice! Finding people who are willing to chat and hang out. I haven’t really had that since 2003, when I left college. Seven years without someone to go to movies or get a cup of coffee or go shopping (other than Justin)? Very lonely. We’ve been in this house for more than 2 years and we haven’t had anyone over for dinner. The years we were in Savannah? We had people over twice: my roommate and our marriage counselors. We kind of fail at making friends.
So I’ve been putting a lot of energy into this right now. Last night I went to a gathering of women through church, mostly the Bible study group, but also other ladies from the church. While there, I was invited to a meeting at one of their homes tonight, but I think I might postpone until next week, because tomorrow we’re having dinner with a couple from the geek group and Justin and I would like an evening to relax a little bit. I have to call her and see if that would work out okay.
But we’re making progress! And it feels really good.