It had been in the works for days, weeks, months ....there would be a meeting. Where it may have started out being a "New Years Together Coming', it turned out to be a little later in the year and bigger than intended.
Wietse Wind and Tom Kuster sat together, more than once, to start planning something that would suit more people, as the first idea was to bring around 20/ 30 people together and talk about 2018, sharing "the reds" and hearing from each other how NOT to do it and how and why to do it differently.
The New Year's Drink idea was not going to be a success because people already had many drinks with their business, family and relatives and were tired meeting up. The meeting was shifted to March.
When Nik Bougalis contacted Wietse before the March date, sharing a possible meet up, the date was changed one final time. That was a no brainer of course!!
The idea to meet was to get to know each other; who was 'the person' behind the Twitter Handle. All the stories shared, sharing the biggest FUD stories and just having a great "Crypto Moment" with people that understand the feeling and wanted to share also. Sharing the good vibes!!
Planning was NOW ..... what needed to be done. Not going into detail, but everything was covered, a nice venue, drinks paid with Ripple, hotel reservations, transportation possibilities and entertainment during the meeting.
April 20th, the day of the meetup.... To be honest, I was a little nervous. Seeing all those people, wow, I was looking forward. Brought two pictures with me, that I was going to need during the day. Filled up my TipBot and GO GO GO!!!
I messaged some friends in a groups app .... my ETA ...., well more people followed and we knew exactly what time everybody was arriving. I was early but a lot of people had that idea. They just wanted to start earlier .... even before the party started .... many were already present.
When I entered the "beach" area I immediately saw familiar faces. People I saw before and people I recognized from their Twitter pic. I started talking to Baltasar (Ali) and that was not noticed
Checking out the venue, the first thing really nice was the label maker. You needed to scan a QR code with the TipBot App and you would get your Name Tag; first amazing feature of the TipBot.
Ripple gave everybody a nice hat, that Nik Bougalis brought from the States. Many pictures will show a Community Member with a nice XRP Hat.
At a certain moment Tom Kuster took it away and he spoke besides a couple other people, with some introductions. Wietse shared with us the great news that there is going to be a European Bank license for the XRPTipbot. The XRPTipbot and other things will be fully licensed for custodian crypto and fiat <> crypto / crypto <> fiat. New possibilities in the future.
Bithomp's CEO also came with a new scoop: As of yesterday Europeans are able to buy XRP with a bank card. Great news, leading us to adoption, thank you Viacheslav; awesome news.
The introduction just kicked it of and people started to talk with each other, it was amazing.
Wietse got a nice present from the Japanese XRPCommunity and Nik Bougalis received a nice Spinner from RippleNL. Presents all over, very nice
There were more presents. Our friend Salva Leone (@sleone_76) shared a lot of presents. Stickers Lip Balm, Lottery Tickets and XRP Sun Lotion; unbelievable, very nice!
There were even more presents. T-shirts and hoodies were given away to particular people by an anonymous donator; at least one that did not want to have his name in here. Two beautiful people showing some merchandise:
People were also able to take picture in a photo booth. Lots of pictures were taken and it gave a lot of smiling faces:
It went all pretty smooth. People spoke with each other and taught each other, learnt from one another and put a face to the twitter handle, they may have spoken / written with for a long time. People share drinks, that were bought with XRP. Another cool application build by the @XRPLLabs boys. The three guys were talking all day, delivering their knowledge to anybody that listened. Wietse showed me the whole process, and it was so incredible easy, like the XRPTipbot; no problems
There were a lot of people, around 125/ 150. From different countries: Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Ireland, but also special guests from the United States.
Of course I have to mention Nik Bougalis and Tiffany Hayden. They came specific for this meet and shared their knowledge with the community. It was an eye catcher for a lot of people and meetings like this one are a good way meeting these special people. Nic, being from Ripple, sharing some insights, and let me tell you, amazing to listen to in such few words describing the biggest things. And Tiffany Hayden, clearer to us, she is very influential in the Crypto world and she also, very willing to share opinions, ideas and a good listener to what the community shared with her. Two very kind people I was honored to meet, thank you. Nic, in my eyes, will always be Iron Man and Tiffany, well she is the FUD fighter and I am happy she is part of the XRPCommunity because it is nicer to have her besides you than against you!!!
Hopefully ......"we are going to hear more of Nic" ?!?!?!?
During the day, there were also a couple streams. The XRPZoo (@XrpZoo) was live streaming from the event. Well known Booboo (@XRPBooBoo) streamed from the Amersfoort grounds together with CryptoBirdDog (@BirdDog1227) that was following the day via YouTube. Many people were seen on camera: Wietse Wind (@WietseWind), CEO Bithomp Viacheslav Bakshaev(@Bakshayev), Matt Hamilton (@HammerToe), Tristan van de Kamp (@ThisIsTRISS), Baltasar (@baltazar223), Tom Kuster (@Tom_Kuster), @RippleNL. Please give these people a follow, as they have a lot to share and are incredible knowledgeable about many different things in the blockchain industry.
During the stream, Wietse thought it would be funny, to put my QR-code name tag on my forehead. Pretty funny actually, because I received some tips, people scanned it and gave me a tip. THAT WAS AMAZING and I would like to thank those people, amazing
Newspapers came by to hear about the meeting, please watch Wietse's account as he probably will show the article in the coming days!! Pictures were taken and as described above XRPZoo streamed big parts on YouTube.
Everything went very well, there were no harsh words, running bulls, unfortunate, no 300 dollar XRP's, but there was one little thing I need to mention. A couple of great hoodies were ordered and.......... well let me keep it short..... in a couple years, it will be a collector's item:
When the time passed by, people started to get hungry, talking and listening makes stomachs growl and diner was served
For some the night was not over yet, so they went into town for some nightly adventures. It was so cool to sit with this group of people, in the night live of Amersfoort, surrounded by a group of people SO KNOWLEDGABLE by Crypto / RIPPLE/ XRP..... surrounded by an even LARGER group that has NO [email protected]$%!$ing clue about Blockchain/ Crypto Currency ...... Ripple eh ..... isn't that the new washing detergent ..... XRP ...... Oh, man I came home........ and guess what I heard coming out of the speakers!!!!
And then .......... we waited all night........ but there he was. We thought we had seen it all, but obviously everybody was waiting for that one person, that one person that is NOT a person........ but an animal......... a cartoon animal, specifically..... a cartoon bear........ well he showed himself
Just wanted to share one more thing. Using XRP for drinks .... many people were like, eh YEAH, like anybody is going to do that!!!!! Well in total it was a group of 34 people that actually spent almost 2.000 XRP. The venue, you think now, where they happy with XRP??? Well they loved it, they like to be front runners and wanted to cooperate gladly. They had a great evening and said the had not been paid SO FAST before!!!
The funny part when everybody left, did NOT feel as a goodbye or farewell. People know they will visit again and to repeat somebodies amazing words. I don't want XRP to go to 10 dollars for myself but for the XRPCommunity, so we can party WHEREVER we want to party with WHOEVER we want to party with. I totally agree, this is just the beginning. The Texas meet was a little while ago, Bitcoin Ben (@bensemchee) and CKJ (@CKJCryptonews) put a lot of Crypto together and yes, we are one big family, but "US Family", "XRP Family" are just very fast .... Plans in the make to organize something in Philadelphia and New York, but Twitter will show future events before they taken place.
I would like to thank @XTRA_HRDCOR_XRP once more for creating my Twitter logo. The XRPTwin Bull is still going strong (sorry have to iron the BULL)!
Huge shout-out to Wietse Wind and Tom Kuster, I would say the heart and soul of the meeting. There were more people, credit where credit is due, but these two did an amazing thing.......... Did they actually do an amazing thing:
Yes, THEY DID AN AMAZING THING
If I have forgotten anything, or anybody, I am sorry but the day has been overwhelming, it was amazing, all the things that happened, and may happen as a result. This was an amazing meet and will probably be the first of many.
I hope everybody had a safe journey back home and if you still have to go home, be safe and give me a call when you are at home, so I know you are okay!!!
This blog is not meant to be any harmful towards anybody. If I do offend people, please tell me and I will change it. I have used tweets that are only affiliated to the meet-up, but once again, if you want me to delete anything with a good reason, no Bitcoin followers, I am NOT going to delete the whole thing, feel free to contact me.
Oh ........ and the fact that I wrote Paying food & drinks with Ripple.... I know I should have written XRP; but EVEN amongst all these XRP/ Crypto lovers, I heard 1 person, ordering a beer with Ripple..... hopefully SOON we will have another meetup and this person, I know who you are, can redeem her/himself.