WoW is a multi-player game and in-game friendships are formed with players you randomly group with much more often than real life friends. Like other online multi-player games WoW has a guild system that are like your in-game family.
I had been in a couple of guilds the Frozen Pirates (it lasted a whole day before I left there) and Shield of the Felwen (until the GM vanished after a couple of weeks) before I finally found somewhere that felt like home in EZO, that had well over 400 members all of whom were very active. The guild was aimed at people that played the game for fun more than hard-core raiders and most people where levelling rather than doing any form of end-game content.
There were a group of people in the 40-50 range and an unofficial race to 60 had started the people in this group were: Cheiftan, Duken, Groundwave, Kameni, Marvellous, Peik, Redfist, Tullip and Xanther and back in 2006 levelling from 40 to 50 was a real drag the quests sent you all over the world of Azeroth and being a priest (even a shadow one) was slow because you either killed too slowly or spent so much time regenerating mana to fight.
This was before the XP nerf, the flight path buff (remember when a flight only took you 1 stop?) and epic mounts were available only at 60 and cost 1000g (when 1000g was a lot of gold; I would compare this to having 100,000 gold now) so travelling took a while but eventually with a few Zul'Farak and Sunken Temple runs around the questing the levels began to disappear.
I loved the instance runs as I spent more time healing than being beaten upon by nasties as I tried to kill them and this really confirmed to me, that I had chosen the right class and that I wanted to raid for bigger challenges in the game.
It took me a full 5 weeks to do these 10 levels and the next 10 would take even longer but the good thing was they were much more fun and I ran more of them in groups with guildies and even when solo the banter in guild chat meant it was never dull.