The Power of Social Media and 20 Minutes

A photo of a cup of coffee.
Image via Wikipedia

In remembrance of Laura St. John, owner of The Horse’s Mouth (1965-2011)

I’ve lost a friend. No, it wasn’t someone I went to school with or someone that lives down the street. It wasn’t someone I work with.

It was someone I met for 20 minutes through the power of Social Media.

Some folks have questioned that power. Some have asked what that power is.

  • Is it the power to connect family and friends?
  • Is it the power to build business relationships?
  • Is it the power to promote your business?

Those answers are yes. And while those are all good and noble reasons for Social Media, there is a deeper reason.

  • Is it the power to plant dreams?
  • Is it the power to find inspiration?
  • Is it the power to connect with individuals you probably will never personally meet?

The answer to those questions is a resounding YES.

And here is her story..

One day while perusing through my Facebook an innocent advertisement appeared on the right hand side of my page. I usually ignore those. But there was a cute little horse looking at me. His name, Mr. Jitters. He was holding a coffee cup and reading a book. I was tempted to click. And I succumbed to the temptation. Click.

I was transported to a Facebook Fan page for a little coffee shop called The Horse’s Mouth in a little town of Buffalo, TX. I knew that town well, as we would pass through it on our drive down to College Station to see our son in college A&M.

Being a coffee lover, I instantly knew that on our next trip to College Station we would need to make a side trip to the coffee shop and visit.

It was going to be an eventful weekend. The Famous “Ring Day” for our son getting his Aggie Senior Ring. We stopped in to “just grab some coffee” on our way down. We were greeted with a very kind and perky person whom we learned was the proprietress, Laura. We were instantly captured by her charm and spent 20 minutes in the store. In those 20 minutes we learned about her store, her vision and dream, her husband, Java (the famous dog), the contest she was a participant in, her love of writing, a rundown on events with the store and the city of Buffalo. We loaded up on coffee and travel mugs and were off with a wave and promise to come back the next time we could schedule a drive through visit.  The Horse’s Mouth and Laura were our topic of conversation for the remainder of the drive.

In the mean time, I stayed connected with The Horse’s Mouth and Laura. We communicated to each other on a few postings. The holidays came and went and I learned about sprinkling Cayenne Pepper on Hot Chocolate. She was doing well and having the time of her life living her dream. The year ended and 2011 began.

Today, I found myself a little behind on catching up with activity on her Facebook Page.

As I scoured the Fan Page, some of what I was reading was not making sense. No, it couldn’t be.  I scrolled down and put the puzzle pieces together. I realized a cold, harsh fact that took my breath away. The beloved little fiery pixie, Laura, was gone from this earth. Taken in a tragic accident on Jan. 3.

As the news and finalization began to sink into my heart and mind, it was then I realized the true successful meaning of Social Media.

It is the power to connect with people. A powerful connection in such a way over the cyber waves, that if given the chance to meet with that person personally for only 20 minutes – You mourn their loss

To the people that knew Laura on very personal basis, I cannot imagine your grief. I will not attempt feeble words of condolences. I cannot say appropriate words of sympathy.

I can say only one thing. Laura taught me an important lesson.

Live your life and be such a person that when you meet and spend 20 minutes with someone –

They too will grieve your death.

It is now, that I go brew a cup of coffee on my feeble little coffee pot and sip a cup in your memory Laura. May others be inspired by your vision, your hopes, your dreams, your love of life, and your love of others.

I know I have.

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