They say birds of a feather flock together. And thanks to Indiblogger, we, the free spirited birds of blogosphere get to flock together quite often at the much awaited Indiblogger meets. I had been eyeing a blogger meet for quite some time now, having missed the HP Connected music meet. And so when a little birdie dropped a mail in my inbox about the HP Print Art IndiBlogger Meet, my reaction was something like this.
My 1st meet and the meet encouraged us to bring family members along! Wow, sounded like a dream come true!
So last Saturday, papa, bhai & I reached Fortune Park, Gurgaon for the meet. Not wanting to get late for the 1st meet, we ended up reaching half an hour early! Papa suggested we wait in the lobby since Mr. Sun was at his sunny best that day. And there in the lobby, I saw many bloggers waiting with their families. I didn’t know anyone of them, but just like you feel so happy to spot Indians when you go abroad, I was all smiles to spot people who shared the same passion as I did.
Finally, Rene asked us all to come in. A quick registration and we made ourselves comfortable. Now I was in a dilemma. I could see all bloggers around me and I was super excited to meet them all. But we all had come with families and it was tough to make out who was the blogger and who the family member! So I decided to play it safe and stick to my table.
But seems Indiblogger knew how to get people talking. The meet began by Rene asking who were the first timers, and soon after groups were assigned tables they had to go to and interact with the bloggers there. The bubbly bunch of galz next to me came to our table and introduced themselves, and the shy me got to know my first set of blogger friends. We soon joined the big table and my apprehensions were soon lost in the peals of laughter!
I had read in various blogs that at Indiblogger meets, if you are lucky, you win cool stuff just for being there. And I witnessed this at my first meet. Prizes for being the youngest blogger, for picking numbers, for the best tweet, for the blogger who came with his brother! Wow! Indiblogger and HP were being generous! And then began the 30 seconds of fame. Being my first meet, I wasn’t prepared for any introduction. So, for me, this was like the times in school when the teacher popped questions randomly and the shy students prayed not being picked up. But I soon realized that everything in a blogger meet is about fun and knowing bloggers better. So, when a blogger sitting behind me claimed to being a crazy blogger, the Indiblogger team got a bit creative and thus began a small contest of being the craziest blogger in the meet. Few bloggers stood up and justified their craziness, with one blogger confessing that he is such a crazy blogger that he has forgotten many of his blog links. All my inhibitions gone in a minute, I too decided to give it a try and explained my craziness-how my blogging drives most of my decisions, right from holiday destinations to evening hang outs. For me, it was an honest confession but never knew it would win me cool HP speakers. Wow! I was on cloud 9!
But the party had just begun! And how can a party be complete without music, so here we were singing our own versions of Old Mac Donald, the old and young enjoying the chorus! Soon, we had the gentleman from HP who introduced us to a new generation of printers that would transform the whole printing experience at home! And that too in a cost effective way! A Q&A session followed soon after.
I was appreciating their tagline “technology nurtures creativity”, when Karuna from lulupu.com came on the stage and actually proved it. As she showed us how the new HP InkAdvantage printer could make the school projects a fun and easy to do affair, papa and I remembered how we had to run from piller to post just to get the right picture for my school projects. Thanks to HP, life would be much easier for my kids!
Seems Indi team had decided to keep the event totally action packed. So after Karuna was done with her demonstration, the team divided the crowd in groups of 15 and each group was asked to decorate a table using material provided. But there was a catch, every team was given a theme for the party along with a deadline and some instructions. People completely unknown to each other were working as a team to get the task right! Now this was magic that only Indiblogger could have managed and they did it very well!
I was amazed to see the creative crafty side of the bloggers present in the room. From pirates to mermaids to circus jokers, we had it all in one room! Our team was hoping to win for the most messy team (we even had a funny name to our team ”Zebra ka Debra”), but were spared the torture! The winning team was all smiles and the guy who got the best won himself a printer! Wow, this was cool! The team also announced a contest where the best blog about the meet could win a HP printer! Wow!
In 2 hours, the crowd in the room had been transformed to a big family, and when it was time for the group pic, bloggers from different walks of life joined hands and echoed “say cheese”, a truly Indiblogger moment!
We soon collected our tees and my brother declared “Now that I have an Indiblogger tee, I too will become a blogger.” And he looked totally inspired!
No party is complete without food, and Indiblogger had ensured there was lot of lip smacking food for the bloggers. Tired after so much of hard work, the bloggers dived for the goodies! I have a sweet tooth and seems the trifle was there just for me, so I indulged myself without inhibitions.
It was time to say goodbye. As we exchanged blog links and numbers, I was wondering that I had walked in with just 2 family members but walked out with so many of them! A family that shared the same passion as I did and a family that embraced first timers with open arms!
As I confessed it was one of the best times I had in the recent past, a blogger friend told me, “now that you’re here, never miss the meets, the fun has just begun!”. And yes, she is so right, the fun has just begun!
Thanks HP & Indiblogger for making my first meet such a memorable experience! Already looking forward to the next meet!