We had no idea what he would look like. While we were safely sitting in the car, the rain poured on the gravel of the small parking place. Every now and then, a car would stop and an Englishman, or lady, would scurry for cover in the inviting dry and warm local inn.
We started theorizing.
"He organizes a folk festival, right? So surely he has a beard!"
"And long hair? No, he doesn't strike me as the hippie type."
It was easy enough for him. All he had to do was look for the one Dutch car with four tourists in it.
A casually clad man approached. Jeans, no beard or hippie hair. In a split second, the voice we had played with for five years materialized in front of our eyes. He was very real and currently in the process of getting soaked.
Will glanced at the sky. "Welcome to England!" he said with a shy smile.
Sitting at his kitchen table, he was soon called away to the festival grounds. Off he went, accompanied by a lot of "I'm so sorry for being such a terrible host!", "take anything your need from the fridge", "your beds have already been made", "don't forget to give me a call when you get to the festival and I'll fix you free tickets!"...
..."Oh and here are my home keys so you can come and leave as you please."
Online friends can be just as real as offline friends. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
The travels of Nora is a series about the adventures of Nora the gaming bear travelling abroad, investigating the thin veil between the online and offline world. This particular post is part of a set of eight gamers, meeting in various formations in England during the summer of 2015.