• Mike Douglas

My First Soton Bloggers Meetup


At about 5-5.30pm yesterday I saw a tweet from Arran (@haloofthoughts) saying who's coming to tonights meet up? I had completely forgotten about the meet up after receiving an email a few weeks ago. I thought about it for a second. and remembered I had been looking forward to going, before I forgot about it, haha.

I had just got out of the bath and was getting ready to chill on the sofa for the evening and watch a film. While this does sound lovely, as someone affected by depression there can be quite a lot of sitting inside...on your own. So I quickly decided to try and get ready to make my way over to Southampton for 7pm. I put my phone on charge and the backup charger, so I could keep charging my phone on the drive to Southampton, hahaha.

I did quite well, I think. I jumped into the car at 6.30pm to make my way to Southampton. I had looked at the email again and seen that we were meeting in the guildhall area. I decided to park in Bedford Place as I know where the parking is. Its a short walk from the guildhall, but I'm sure there is closer parking if you know the area better.

While I walked through the parks that are between Bedford Place and the guildhall, I was behind two guys that were walking slightly slower than me, so I was getting closer to them. I noticed as I got closer they stopped holding hands and eventually they stopped walking so I passed them. I felt sad, I feel like they worried because they thought maybe I had been following them or something. I hope they just stopped walking naturally and this is just another case of me other thinking. Remember #LoveIsLove.

I arrived at the venue, The Artisan, at about 7.20pm got myself a coke (11 and a half months no drinking woop woop) and made my way around to the seating area. There seemed to be four tables with people sat down spread around the room and a few empty tables. I walked slowly passed, not recognising anyone and sat myself in the corner. Now I was a little anxious about being sat on my own, not because I was on my own, I'm used to that. But because I thought I should be able to pick out someone. I sent a cheeky tweet asking if anyone was there and very quickly Alice (@AliceSpake) came over and said hi then walked me over to the first two tables I had walked past. Then came the intros. I have to say I have found a certain amount of self acceptance in not remembering peoples names. I don't get as hung up on it now. I do like being introduced to people as its a nice 'in' to the conversation, rather than being important to remember anyones names. Is that just me?

Heres the test...who was I sat with at the start... Anna, Grace and their friend from London, damm Im not sure. Feeling #Shame right here.

We chatted about our days and our blogs. This was ready nice, I find it really interesting to hear about other peoples blogs and what they are interested in. Thats part of the reason why I enjoy Daily Focal so much. The venue was a very pleasant place to sit and chat. I have not been there before, so it was also nice to be somewhere new. There was a really good night cafe vibe. Have I just made up night cafe, is that a thing? The music started off really nice, there was a guy singing and playing the guitar he was pretty good. The entrainment for the rest of the evening was a little mixed. But thats the joy of live local music right...at one stage I was caught out for jigging in my chair when the music had stopped and there was some talking, guessing I had zoned some of the rapping out haha. I did appreciate being somewhere that gave local bands and artists a chance though.

I really enjoyed talking to Sadie (@eidasnibleb), we chatted the difference between sex and gender. Which I found really interesting, as someone that can get way too caught up in the 'little things' like definition Sadie gave such an good explanation of the difference between the two. Its topics like this that I find interesting. Peoples openness to talk about something different and on occasion personal topics too is just so interesting. Its different to the everyday chats you are likely to have and provides an opportunity to talk openly and honestly about different view points. This was slightly deeper than our earlier with Anna and Grace and our exchange of random 'facts' like an average potato will product 36 chips, a pencil could draw a straight line for one mile and so on haha. I was really interested to hear about Angel's time aboard, it reminded me so much of my time in Australia. I bloody miss that place! Talking temperatures is surely more fun when your in the warmer place though, right?

I did enjoy eye rolling to 'twinklefingers' with Ellisha (@thesotongirl), Angel, Emily, Sadie and Arran. To be fair, that hideous song was rememberable. Does that make it a success? I guess in a way...

It was a very pleasant evening, heck you know its been a good evening when you get kicked out because the venue is closing. It was great meeting new bloggers and bloggers that write about different things to me.

A big thank you to Alice for organising. I look forward to hopefully attending another #SotonMeetup soon.

#SotonBloggers #Southampton #Artisan #Meetup #Bloggers #Vloggers #LiveMusic

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