Last Friday I hopped the Megabus up to New York again. This visit had one soul purpose: to sing karaoke with a bunch of people I’d never even met. Blogging certainly does open new doors for me!
Six months ago I wouldn’t have been caught dead on Twitter. I saw it as merely a playground for narcissistic celebrities and teenagers with poor grammar. Eventually I realized that there was no way I could grow my blog without it, I had to grudgingly give in. What I found in the twitterverse (besides a penchant to put twit in front of everything) was not what I’d expected at all. Here was a community of intelligent, interesting travelers and writers. And they wanted to talk to me!
A couple of months back I mentioned on Twitter that I was going out for karaoke on my birthday. This evolved into a discussion on the best karaoke songs, and before long, the idea of a travel blogger karaoke night was born. This being twitter the event was christened Twitaoke. Luckily for everyone involved the very competent Alisha from Sosauce took the reins. She got us organized and booked a large private room at Karaoke 35 in Midtown.
I was a bit nervous for the event. The only person attending that I’d met before was Dave from Go Backpacking (the other lone DC representative) and, while everyone seemed nice online, you never know how things will go face-to-face. Luckily everyone was incredibly welcoming and friendly. It’s an exciting and strange feeling to meet people for the first time who you feel as if you already know.
Although we had a rash of last-minute cancellations, about 20 kickass bloggers turned out. Among the many people I finally got to met were previous collaborators Andrew from Brooklyn Nomad and Grant Lingel who I interviewed back in October. The Lost Girls were all there possessing amazing voices totally inappropriate for amateur hour, as did Jodi of Legal Nomads. The scene stealers of the night were definiatly the Wayward Winos who did an intensely hilarious rendition of Paradise by the Dashboard Light.
My singing voice has often been met with grimaces, polite smiles or inquiries into my possible tone-deafness. Nonetheless I sucked it up and sang quite a bit. I did a rocking rendition of Should I Stay or Should I Go and then partnered with Alisha for several magical duets including El Scorcho and Wake me Up Before you Go-Go. The night ended with a special tribute to this video. Travel blogger and Muppet Bohemian Rhapsody:
Blogging takes you funny places mentally, emotionally and, in this case, physically. A few short months ago I never would have guessed that I’d be sitting here, singing my heart out with Kermit and a bunch of people I’d never met before. It’s one of the massive rewards of this project that I’ve found an entire community of people who understand and share my almost pathologic need to travel.
I’ll be seeing all of my new New York frends (and hopefully some more new familiar faces) when I head up again in June for the Travel Blog Exchange Conference. Between now and then I can’t wait to see where else travel blogging leads me.