Having a little time to myself today to reflect, I considered why I’m blogging in some more depth and thought I’d share 6 great reasons I thought of to blog your vacation, and why I’m doing that with ours.
Yes, it’s extra work. It can be challenging to find internet. There’s definitely discipline involved, and it means you’re somewhat public in whatever you’re doing. But here are some great reasons why I’m blogging our trip.
- I like to bring readers along for the ride. I enjoy sharing life and adventures with my readers and they seem to enjoy it too.
- By writing about things, I relive them in a deeper way. I “process” them, from a neurobiology perspective. By thinking about my experiences and describing them, I store them more deeply in my own memory.
- Photography helps me remember things easier. In a way, I don’t focus as deeply on something I’m seeing when I am taking a photo, because the photo is a way of “tabbing” a memory. It saves my brain work to retrieve that memory later. I can look at a photo I took and go, “Aha!” and be right back in that moment, versus a more laborious concentrating that is usual to retrieve a long term memory. As I age, blogging and photography are my own way of capturing highlights for a personal “scrapbook.”
- Blogging keeps my writing skills up. Traveling is pretty distracting for being able to do immersive fiction writing, I find. I’m too excited by my new surroundings to settle into my novel writing, but blogging is a way of exercising my writing muscle so when I go back to my fiction, I’m not rusty.
- Blogging makes me more alert. I’m always looking for that interesting moment, the funny micro-story, the character that deserves description and the words to nail something to the page. For instance, I’ve been thinking a lot about the Canadians we’ve met and how to describe them as a group, in a few broad brushstrokes. I do not have a lot of stereotypes or experiences to cloud my thinking on this, it’s based on the people I’ve met so far, but there’s definitely been a consistency among them. So here’s a stab at what I’ve experienced: “A British Columbia man is often white and middle class. He’s bluff, hearty and outgoing, with a whiskbroom of mustache, thick-fingered capable hands, and often wears a plaid shirt. A BC woman often has a hairstyle from somewhere in the mid-nineteen nineties when curling irons and highlights were a thing, favors seasonal-themed sweaters with leggings, and necklaces with dangling birthstone charms that represent her children’s birthdays. Many like to read, love dogs, and are very proud of Canada but also love Hawaii. All have a liberal use of “eh?” and broaden and flatten certain words: “about” sounds like “a boot” for instance. I find myself adopting the accent so easily, and as you can tell from my posts so far, I love the country and the people. So real and unpretentious. Mike and I fit right in. If I lived here, I’d add seasonal sweaters to my leggings and one of those birthstone necklaces to my jewelry–in fact I think I already have one.
- Blogging is a writing sample for possible new readers. Yesterday on our journey of that day, Mike and I were discussing how we’re both similar and different to other people roughly in our age bracket traveling this route.“So many others have done this. We’re just a couple of middle-aged empty nesters doing the tourist thing,” Mike said as we walked through a deep forest beside a stream, holding hands.“We’re not just tourists, taking things in. We’re working artists,” I said. “We’re making art out of our journey.” That crystallization of our purpose, of our roles, has infused both of us with an excitement and sense of purpose in what we are doing and why.
We’re working artists, making art out of our pictures and stories. It’s how we make a living and more deeply experience our lives.
Would you blog your journeys? Why or why not?