Monday, April 20, 2009

SxSe Wrap-Up

"Only connect! That was the whole of her sermon. Only connect the prose and the passion, and both will be exalted, and human love will be seen at its height. Live in fragments no longer. Only connect."
-- E.M. Forster,

sxse09Taken at Rum Runner's in Islamorada by @annohio.

SxSe 2009 was everything it promised to be and more. Old friendships were further strengthened and new ones were made. I'm simply amazed at how seamlessly we moved from Twitter to real life in two seconds flat. It's a testament to the power of social media that so many people who would otherwise have never connected came together for a weekend of fun and frolicking. And the best part is -- we'll continue to connect online, until next time we meet.

We had Twitter friends visiting from: Nebraska, Texas, Colorado, Missouri and Norway. Yes! Freakin' Norway! Locally, a few folks flocked over here from West Palm Beach as well as Fort Myers and Naples. And of course, the rest were from Dade and Broward.

We missed one dear friend from St. Louis because of a health condition, though he was present in our hearts. Two other friends, one from Pennsylvania and the other from Massachusetts, didn't make it because of financial constraints. We probably would've had more attendees, but the weekend coincided with Barcamp Orlando.

We come from all walks of life and backgrounds. Among us are military veterans, historians, writers, geeks, teachers, musicians, photographers, businessmen, dental technicians, full-time moms and more. We even have a couple of cancer survivors. Everyone is so beautiful and creative in their own way.

All the events went without a hitch, except for the inevitable fact of Cuban timing, plus the fact that one of the organizers had broken a bone in her leg and was on crutches, and also, someone parked there car in a gated lot that closed after hours and could not get to it until the next morning. But other than that ... dinner at Versailles was perfect, followed by a wonderful performance at Kimbaracumbara with PALO!. We loved listening to Leslie Cartaya's beautiful voice and even got an extra treat when Albita, who was in the audience, got up on stage to sing a tune! The following day, we had brunch at JJ's Diner in South Miami, followed by the big tweetup at Carrabbas in Miami Beach.

We can't thank our supporters enough. PALO! put on a great show. Thanks to everyone who chipped in to make it happen! Annie's Costumes gave us some great schwag, including leis that were just marvelous. We thoroughly enjoyed drinking Stormhoek wine out on the beach after hanging out at Carrabbas and a few people took bottles home as gifts. The next day, a group of us got a very comfortable ride to the Islamorada courtesy of Miami Tour Company. We stopped at Rumrunner's first to enjoy a cool drink and balmy breezes on the look-out platforms, followed by a leisurely meal at Morada Bay.

Special thanks also go out to @brendajos, who sewed the schwag bags and to @dearyvette, who brought all the giant underwear. And above all, thanks to all who attended, shared and connected. We could list everyone's Twitter name here, but the list would be quite long!

And even though Carrabbas did not technically support the event, we appreciate that they put up with our underwear-signing shenanigans!

(And in case you are wondering, the signed underwear is being sent to our dear friend who is sick and couldn't make it.)

We'll let the slideshow do the rest of the talking ... it's quite possible some of us won't laugh as hard all year as we did this weekend. But we have the photos to remind us of the joy of great friendship and company.

Until next year, everybody! It was a blast!

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