I’d been meaning to get round to blogging about this for a while. As today is the last day of October – I can’t really put it off. For this month marks five years of this blog. Hard to know where the last half decade has gone. All too fast. Lots of ups, downs and everything in between. I’ve never kept a ‘diary’ before – but this blog is certainly as close as it gets. It’s interesting to sometimes look back – years at a time – and read about things I was doing. The highs of the new job (as was, November 2008) – through to the lows of redundancy four years later. Relationship ups and downs – a lot about holidays and city breaks. Anecdotes, vignettes, objets d’art, photography, reviews, musings, music, food and drink, forays into cycling. I covered quite a lot.
It’s not just five years since this blog started – it’s also five years since I started on Twitter and also on Tumblr. These still continue apace (and I’ve been on Pinterest a fair few years too, and Instagram). But with Twitter – I took a break of almost 1.5 years, only returning earlier this month. What I came back to was noticeably different to what I’d left. Lots of the ‘old crowd’ had faded away. Others are still on it – but a shadow of their former selves (in terms of how often they engage in conversations). All is not lost, though, as some of the old-school remain and that is a good thing. Of course – it’s much, much less ‘quirky’ than it was 5 years ago. Today, Twitter is at the convergence of Facebook, LinkedIn, Myspace (as was), all types of blogging – and just about every other ‘social media’ activity that one can engage in. Snooty as it sounds – I preferred the ‘olden days’ when not every Tom, Dick and Harry was on it. But nothing stands still – least of all in the online world!
But some of my best memories of blogging precede this blog by five years – going all the way back to 2003 and my first ever blog which was on a site called 20six (now essentially defunct as a platform). 2003 is only 10 years ago but blogging was far from mainstream back then and the interface and format were much simpler. But there was a much tighter sense of community. That was the pre-Twitter, pre-Facebook age, though. It felt much more like being ‘at the frontier’ back then.
Anyway – the blog approaches 250,000 hits. Not bad going. I’ve had dalliances ‘self hosted’ but am now back on the wordpress.com site but using my own domain name. This is quite a good arrangement. On reflection – I don’t think that, unless you’re trying to be commercial, that you need to be self-hosted. I’m certainly quite happy on here for now. I’ve also gone back to my old blog template that I put together quite some years back.
Anyway – to those who have accompanied me on the journey, whichever the platform – thanks for the ride and here’s to the next five years!