I normally don’t attend bloggers’ events/get-togethers here in Dubai. I had an unpleasant experience the first time I attended one. Let’s go back in time for a bit to explain to you more about it.
A few years ago, back when Pinay Flying High was but a website full of my weird shenanigans in this city, I came across a Dubai bloggers’ group which vowed to help other bloggers in the city with whatever they need and also to have a little bit of fun while at it. It piqued my interest plainly because my blog was all over the place then, not that I don’t like what it was then but I also wanted to know more about this complicated industry that I was trying to get myself into. So I joined the group and attended one of their get-togethers. It was supposed to be dinner followed by drinks somewhere in Jumeira Beach Road. First thing to put me off was they were late, so I was basically sitting on a table by myself drinking my second virgin mojito when they started arriving one by one. By the time all of them arrived, I felt so out of place as they seem to know each other for quite a long time except for me and 3 other girls. It was quite a big group. What I noticed about the group though was the unmistakable fakeness that they were showing to each other. Everyone’s trying to steal the spotlight from someone for whatever reason that they can find, a bigger blog, more numbers of followers, the invites that they got from which PR companies, the money they earned etc. etc. Then when someone asked about a technical issue that she’s facing about her site, nobody seem to care about it. I’m not so sure why but I had this odd feeling that none of them would like to help the person who’s having an issue with her blog for their own personal gain. You see, I don’t need these kinds of people. I don’t need to go out with a big group of people just to establish that I’m in the know, that I’m cool or that I know a bunch of people who are not even going to matter to me in the long run or whatever pathetic excuse that they have to hang out together even if they don’t like each other. They never heard from me again after that horrible meet-up. Not that they’d care because I don’t think they even noticed my presence there since nobody seem to have noticed that I didn’t join them for the drinks after that painstaking dinner. From then on, I never had an inclination to attend any bloggers’ events. I am not generalizing that all of the bloggers will be as egoistic as the first group that I met but that event somehow traumatized me.
Fast forward to the present, last Saturday Mitzie Mee and exPIAtriatewife arranged a dinner event for a handful of bloggers. The idea of this bloggers’ dinner somehow materialized during the charity event that I hosted last November which they have both attended. I don’t really know them personally as it was my first time to meet them both at the charity lunch but we somehow connected immediately. So when I finally got the formal invitation from them for the dinner, I never hesitated to say yes to it. It wasn’t because I felt like I owed them for attending my charity event but because I really would love to get to know them much better. Frankly speaking, I never really cared which other bloggers were invited as long as both Mitzie Mee and exPIAtriatewife were there so when I saw the final list of the invitees, I was over the moon with happiness as I know most of them. I’ve been reading all of their blogs and some of them even joined my recent collaborations. It would be good to see the face and hear the voice behind the blogs that I read, right?
Note: Being with the bloggers is a wonderful thing, nobody judges you if you take loads of photo of the food that you’re about to eat at every angle.
To make the long story short, we all had a blast! We were warmly welcomed by the very gracious Pia (aka exPIAtriatewife) into her wonderful home. It was a night full of laughter, food and a little bit of blogging tips and advices. The blogging tips and advices were all courtesy of Mitzie Mee while all of us stared at her with our mouth open trying to decipher the codes that she’s trying to explain to us. Nobody understood what she was saying so we just ate more food instead. Seriously though, Mitzie Mee is a mad genius.
Look at them all so cute pretending that they don’t know I’m taking their photos. 🙂
So if I am to compare this bloggers’ event to the first one that I attended, well… it’s not really rocket science isn’t it to figure out that I had a blast? Nobody’s trying to steal the spotlight from anyone in this group. We all had our fair share of time to talk about our blogs and what issues we’re facing (enter Mitzie Mee’s genius solutions). Food was great and the company was even better. The hours passed without us even noticing it. It’s wonderful and such a relief to meet them all.
From left to right:
Marianne of DubaiUnveiled.com whose got rice-loving kids, Filipinized by her nanny. She’s a freelance writer for a magazine and blogging is just a hobby. During our dinner, she asked Pia how she manages to blog on top of her full-time job and kids. I was quite confused as that’s exactly what she does too and she doesn’t even recognize her own supermom powers. I admire these ladies, juggling work, blogging and kids. They all deserve a medal or something. She mostly blogs about being an expat mom in Dubai.
Ken of Kennethsurat.com, the crafty blogger. I met him the first time during my charity event as well and I had a feeling that he’s from University of the Philippines, I was right. Not really sure how I figured it out but there’s just something about him which screams Iskolar ng Bayan. Lol. He mostly blogs about travel and oh! You’ve got to order one of his Surat Journals. Talented person you’ve got here.
Lady of Ladyandhersweetescapes.com, she is so adorable! I had a mild heart attack when she disclosed her real age, she’s actually older than I am. I look like her mother on the photo, I shouldn’t have stood beside her. She blogs about travel, food and events around Dubai. Probably the only one amongst all of us who’s doing it right – earning from the blog. Yep, she’s a high roller.
Rachel of stuffbyrhey.com, I have an inclination of calling her Mommy Rach as she’s got this mother hen vibe for reasons I don’t really understand. A very down-to-earth person whose presence will surely make you feel comfortable and at ease, like how mothers usually do. She usually writes about DIY’s, expat life, food and her cute little Aria – the daughter.
Ida of mrsjackofalltradesdaily.blogspot.ae/, married to an Italian which explains her very Italian accent. I am in love with her accent. She mostly writes about fashion and her kids are the next Mario Testinos for being their mom’s fashion photographers. I’m secretly hoping that the next bloggers’ event will be at her house so we can take a quick look inside her wardrobe (she’s got one to die for based on her stories) and have her mini Mario Testinos take our photos. * hint * hint * :p
Sanne of mitziemee.com, an ex-cabin crew/pilot/tour guide who is now working towards a degree in medicine while blogging in between. Now if she’s not the word “achiever” personified then tell me who is. She is, just like all the rest, a darling. A very well-versed person with a good head on her shoulder, I really do admire her.
Last but not the least, Pia of expiatriatewife.blogspot.ae – the gracious and hospitable host. I like it when she tells her stories, she’s very animated and very lively. We discovered one thing in common between us, we’re both not a big fan of sweets but would eat chips at any given time of the day. YAY! I’m not alone!
If you’re not following their blogs yet then do it now. You’ll hear a lot about them here on my blog as we ended the night with only one agenda, we’ll have to do this get-together more often. And oh! We’re brewing something huge, you’ve got to watch out for it.
It really was a bloggers’ dinner to remember. I hope I won’t have to wait for a long time for the next one. 🙂