this too
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
  A year rushes by

Like heavy traffic on a wet day, time rushes by splattering me with mud and it’s a year today since I decided that I too must definitely have a blog and jumped in. A strange decision, a strange activity, and I still don’t really have a handle on it, but I know it has proved a great gift and made this semi-technophobe unequivocally happy nearly every day to be connected to the internet.

I wanted, mostly, a framework for regularly trying to write a bit - and in this I have been deeply disappointed and frustrated with myself. I’ve found the time and energy so briefly and sporadically, lacking the space to reach inside for it and knowing that it’s not really the space - since it’s not in the same dimension as my other daily activities - but the motivation that I lack. This has been painful. But here I still am, so I haven’t given up hope.

On the other hand, buying a digital camera was a whim, an add-on, and taking photos (which I’d almost never done before) has proved a delight, a new opening into seeing and touching and playing with the present. My world will never look the same again as the patterns and colours keep growing and changing and swirling around me. An escape from words into a different dimension of head and heart. It’s lovely.

And most of all this new navel-gazing activity has miraculously proved to be very far from just that, brought new friends and contacts on every continent through their blogs and comments and emails, and some of them right here in London in the flesh - precious people I never would otherwise have met. It’s a village I can visit every day: what a sweet discovery for someone tired of the anonymity of the big city who longs for community. It’s a flood of writing and photos – skilful and moving, hilarious and immediate, experienced quite differently from reading a book. It is hands that reach out from the computer screen and take mine. Amazing.

And what comes next I’ve no idea. As Spring approaches some doors seem to be opening for me, if I don’t take fright and turn away. In that context, a place to reflect and process and connect and let off steam feels like a good thing to have.
Wow, has it already been a year? Congrats on the blog-birthday...and here's to many, many more!

(I love what you say about a digital camera helping you to "play with the present." Yes, that's it *exactly*!)
Oh Jean, happy happy blog birthday. So delighted you took the plunge and encouraged me to do the same.

And I think the writing (and photography) you have done this year has been wonderful. We really are our own harshest critics. You will do more, don't worry. The muse isn't going to go away.

I agree about the digital camera :-).

And fingers crossed for the possibilities ...

It's been a pleasure getting to know you this past year, Jean. Lots of love.
Happy blogday! I'm glad you've stuck around. "This too" is always one of the first blogs I visit, for the thoughtful writing as well as the great photography. Thanks!
Jean, it's a delight to be living in this village as your neighbor. Your writing and your photos have become part of my world, one that entertains and moves and helps sustain me - and many others, I'm sure. You've had a great year in the blogosphere, and I wish you many more.
Jean, you have enriched my life and so many others with your words and your pictures, both of which are simply a reflection of your spirit. I too am so glad you decided to plunge into blogging, and would be terribly sorry not to be able to visit here every time I see there's a new post. Happy First BlogDay!!
Happy Blogday!
I'm very glad I discovered your blog. I think the cloak of relative anonymity blogs afford allows us to express ourselves in ways that would feel awkward in other settings -- say, face to face.
And the great thing about that cloak is that you can lift it bit by bit, or leave it in place.
Thanks, Jean!
Having a blog in a new city has been such a blessing. I now have friends all over the world, and more keep stopping by. I may be a bit alone, but I am not isolated.

Digital cameras are miraculous. I never could afford to experiment with film, there was a huge time delay, and I was at the mercy of the processing machine. Now, I take a picture, download it, play with it, know exactly what I did, and how to change. I always take several shots of everything.

I got very silly new socks, and while trying to describe them to a friend on the phone, I took a picture of them, and sent it, and she laughed.
Jean, Happy Blogday! I am very glad you are here. I have a hard time imagining this corner of the blogisphere without you!
Happy first blogday, Jean, and wishes for many more! I love what you wrote about the digital camera and this village of a blog community and agree with you totally. I really appreciate and lookf forward to your sensitive writing even if I don't always comment.
Happy Blogiversary Jean!
Just joining the chorus of approval to say that your blog is a 'must' for me: your posts really resonate.
Ooh, I love seeing those sprouts - crocuses? Spring is nigh!

Happy Blogiversary, Jean! Glad to have found you online and to have you as one of favorite neighbors in this blog community. It's an unexpected joy, this community, isn't it? I never expected this when I started blogging either. It's really opened up my world. May wonderful things fall into place for you in the coming year.
Happy Blogday, Jean. Thanks for your words (and your inspiring account of walking!).

And many more...
How similar your words are to mine from more than two years back (can it be so long since my first blog birthday!) and I look on this list of commenters and see familiar names and faces even there! A small world, indeed, and people with good folk and wondrous digital images to share. Keep the faith (and the photography) going!
Fred, you of course started it all for me a year ago by issuing the 'Where are You From' challenge, which I so loved doing and then had nowhere to publish!
Congratulations, Jean. I can't believe you started blogging after I did (by 1 month). I love your photos and remain happy that you did not give up the writing.
Happy blogday! I'm very glad to have met you (via comments on Dale's blog).

Marshall McLuhan was right about the Global Village coming into existence, but wrong about its cause: not broadcasting but "tinycasting", this odd community of intimate strangers and unknown friends.
You describe the surprise and the delight and the amazing comraderie of blogging so well. A year rushes by--yes, but now you have a record of the life lived beneath the surface.

Happy, happy blogday! You truly have a wonderful site.
Happy blogiversary Jean! I hope to see many more of yours.
A whole year went by? Wow... I am a bit late in wishing you a happy blogaversary ... but here it is!
A year - is that all? Here's to many more.
Belated happy blogiversary, and many happy returns. I bet you've written more, and better, than you remember. Have a dig through your own archives sometime; I'm sure you'll be surprised at what you find.
Oh Jean - I feel like I've been away forever! I "return" to discover you've had a blogaversary and where was I?

Happy Happy Day. For without your blog I would never have "met" you and me oh my, how wonderful it is for me to find you in our village/community every day with your joys, sorrows and beautiful pictures.

I send you millions of cyber hugs and even ... yes ... kisses.
Congratulations, Jean! And keep it up.
I have just begun blogging last month. I am addicted already. I think it is such a creative outlet and I find people so candid. I love to be able to include photos as well as Google and clip and paste things as I think of them (let me not ignore the spell check option that is invaluable too! lol)

cheers! Kate
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Freelance copy-editor and translator. Keen on language, literature, photography, art, music, buddhist meditation and the countryside.

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