I've had so many wonderful times staying with friends I met through fandom. The earliest was rohan_lady, who I met in a romance roleplay board on Tolkien Online. Our characters dated for years, but never got past first base. She turned out to be this wonderful, effervescent Aussie chick, who came to visit me here and we roadtripped across the province. It was amazing. I remember hanging out at this Hostel in Jasper and sweet-talking this English guy and a Kiwi (who hadn't met before either) into driving us down the Icefield Parkway, and just spending the day all four of us going Holy Fuck! Mountains!
My first about six months on LJ, I was into Master & Commander fandom pretty seriously. I had seen the film but was just starting to read the books and like cruisedirector, esteven, seascribe and sparowe were about my only friends (and we're still friends!) The only one gone of that crowd is Bronzelionel, who I still miss fiercely. I used to enter in the drabble challenges over at mandc100, I think Pullings was my favourite character, so I used to award all my rum to him (you got a virtual shot of rum for every drabble that fit the prompt), and everyone was so friendly and lovely even when I hadn't read the books at all.
I stayed with esteven and saw windmill museums and the Wall and ancient churches full of modern art, and watched Starsky & Hutch and The Professionals
Later, I was hovering at the edges of SGA fandom and svmadelyn hosted the Summary Ficathon: The SV and SGA Version, where people wrote terrible, terrible summaries then other people wrote stories for them. I didn't even get a story but I still had a fantastic time. I hadn't written anything in an age, and my story wasn't even very good by crack standards, but people liked it, and I loved reading all the other stories.
Immediately hitting it off with artemis_rain at a party because we both loved Ianto in that TW ep where he thought he was a serial killer, and then dating her for eight months and staying friends to this day.
I spent a week with linaelyn and her beautiful family, and we went to the Computer History Museum to watch a working model of Babbage's Difference Engine, ate wonderful food, and watched Iron Man.
Then there was comics fandom. Man, that's been my fannish life for years now. I remember the excitement of writing again, writing because I loved it, Sea Stars taking shape under my fingers as I inhaled canon and altered as I went. Getting and leaving reviews and reading all the fic I could find. Deciding to step up as co-mod of the ship comm and meeting two wonderful friends in my sister mods. Having to stretch myself as I learned to run challenges and moderate a quickly growing community of fellow fans. Still wanting to write and read all the fic imaginable.
I visited culurien and marinarusalka and went on tall ships, and lighthouses and city tours, and had more amazing food and watched SPN and read comics and lost at Lord of the Rings Trivial Pursuit.
Going to WisCon, stayed with garrideb, my first convention ever, and the amazing feeling of wow, this is my species. Here's a conference of a thousand fannish women and men, who I can talk to and who want to hear what I have to say and who think so many fascinating shiny things. We stayed up too late and got up too early every day, and being absolutely exhausted by the end. We read piles of comics and watched Buffy and... god, I don't even remember. STUFF! It was amazing. I ate so much fried cheese and drank so much local beer. Wisconsin is AMAZING.
And of course I met Nenya through fandom. Oddly neither of us remember which one. Possible The Lord of the Rings, through the PPC. She's sitting across from me reading Doctor Who/B5 crack fic, and I love her very much.
Thank you, fandom.