Tagged: Why do I blog?
I've been tagged.
Laura passed me this question: why do you blog?
My first answer, considering how little time I've spent at this blog lately, was sad and sheepish: ummm..lately? I don't.
But as always, Laura set my pen to scribbling, even at 2 AM. I'd climbed out of bed and booted up the laptop, a jetlagged stupor and legendarily bad eyesight conspiring to convince me it was 6:45 AM and time to start my day. Good time for a good question. Perfect time for this question, since I've been hankering to get here more often and more than hankering to give this blog a long overdue makeover.
Why do I blog? The tag asked for 5 reasons. I'll give you 6:
1. Blogging helps me pay attention.
I look at life like a writer when I blog. I notice what's around me, find myself catching things I would have missed in my bazillion mile per hour past. Just knowing I'll be heading here pricks the ears, opens the eyes...keeps me awake and scribbling.
Internally, the effect's just as dramatic. Posts, comments, the blogs I visit through the comment box...blogging stirs up things I doubt I'd run across any other way.
2. There are some truly cool people hanging out on the other side of this keyboard.
See them there? I can't count the fabulous people I've met through this blog, many in person. Can't count the pincho tours during Salamanca visits, the friends this blog has brought me, the cool things I've been asked to do. I just plain like the people who visit this blog.
I have a certain way of looking at the world; I've learned what I've learned navigating the waters of expat life in Spain. If any of that can spark something in somebody else, answer a question, forward a resource, or inspire a good hearty laugh, all the better. Sometimes I think blogging is the ultimate way to pay it forward.
3. Some days I surprise myself.
Amazing what an empty text box can coax out of me. Some days I blog just to see what I type.
4. The blog keeps track of the minutes.
You can't spend 5 weeks in the States and not notice what you don't have in your life: a house, bursting bank accounts, a car, a family and the SUV to cart it around in, you know, things you've built, stuff you've bought. When I moved to Spain, I bought myself a life of well-lived minutes. I don't earn what I used to; I may or may not get back to owning a house and collecting possessions. But I've got to tell you, I spend my time well. This blog lets me mark all those minutes and come back to celebrate them again.
5. I've got this funny thing about bridges.
Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to live somewhere really different from the States. Then I talk to someone who's convinced all Americans are illiterate gun owners who eat nothing but McDonald's. Or open an email from an American who's not sure cell phones have reached Spain yet.
Every once in a while I watch this blog bridge - Spaniards to Americans, Spaniards to expats living in Spain, Americans to the world outside our borders, conservatives to liberals. Catalans to Castillians. People who speak Spanish to those who don't. I like when we disagree; I like when people who are absolutely convinced they know what Americans or Spaniards are like misunderstand me. I like being forced to question my own experience here. I love hosting the party where people who thought they had little in common find common ground.
And there is nothing I would rather do than encourage more of my paisanos to cross the Atlantic, or the Pacific or the border with Mexico or... Travel, people!
6. Writing about my wanders is the perfect excuse.
I must wander, I tell you! I must! I must turn this hard won vocational virtuality into solo travel and blog posts. You're all counting on me, aren't you?
Speaking of which: I'm booked for Tuscany in April. Recommendations, oh wise, well-travelled ones?
Anybody want to pick up this tag? I won't name names, but please, if you'd like to join the tag, leave a comment with a link to your post about why you blog. Here's a spin, nonbloggers - leave a comment about why you don't blog! I've just declared this an equal opportunity tag.