So, I went back to Rival. That wasn’t planned. But it was worth it. Not so much because of Rival but for the company. I first “met” this friend onlline. On a music site. in 2008. For many years we exchanged messages, mostly about music. But also about my job, first in Belgrade and then back in Ottawa where I was dealing with natural disasters. We also talked about her job. Turns out she is a famous artist in Sweden. Something I didn’t know at first and this is probably why we became friends. I was not threatening. I was just this Canadian guy online who happened to share similar interest in music: Kings of Convenience, Mariee Sioux, Feist, Nouvelle Vague and so many more. And we would never see each other. That was until my job took me to Stockholm.
When I learned that I would move to Stockholm back in spring 2011 we immediately talked about the first coffee we would have together. But event then it was unreal, so distant. And it took over 6 weeks after I got here before we met. I was busy settling in. She was busy with her career taking her often to neighboring countries. But we finally met. And it felt like meeting an old friend for the first time.
To be honest it wasn’t that easy. I got to Rival a bit early. By the time I got there she had sent me a message to let me know that she would be 15 minutes late. Not a problem at all. I’m sitting in a nice cafe and have no other plans for the evening. I have all the time in the world. I have to run so often in my life – from meetings to meetings – but when I sit in a coffee shop I want to chill, relax… But in this case this means 15 minutes to worry about crazy things. What if she doesn’t like me? What if we have nothing to say after 5 minutes? What if I don’t like her? Usually I don’t worry about these things. And at that time I couldn’t understand why I was so worried. Now I think I know. I really valued that “online friendship”. It’s not that we were chatting very often but when we did it was fun. And I was afraid that real life would ruin this. Stupid.
It was a pleasant evening. We ended up spending 4 hours at Rival talking about everything. And we left thinking that we could be talking for so many more hours. Which we will do soon. I think I may have made my first real Swedish friend that night.