Friday, 16 May 2014

Found myself in a strange town

Readers of a certain age may well recognise the title of this post as the opening line of the Jam's single Strange Town and it seems quite fitting.

For a few weeks I am back in the Devon town where I lived for most of my adult life until we decided to move to Skopelos.

The truth is everything feels strange here.

I know my way round, I recognise the shops, pubs and other businesses that form the core of the town, but it's all a bit disjointed. My lovely family are the reason for me being here, which is very sustaining. However, I've also bumped in to a few acquaintances and I've been left wondering if I look as old to them as they do to me.

That's the thing when we lose that continuity of contact with people and places. Incremental changes become massive jumps.

Anyway, I'm here for a few weeks so I suppose I'll get used to it. Somehow, though, I can't get this song out of my mind.

Saturday, 10 May 2014

A to Z Reflection: Well, how did I get here?

I'm writing this with less than five hours to go to the deadline for these pieces reflecting on the A to Z Blogging Challenge for 2014, which is similar in a way to how I got involved with the project to begin with.

I've been intending to write this piece for a few days and have only just got around to it and I always intended to take part in this year's challenge, but only formally threw my hat in the ring the day before it all started.

But in whatever haphazard way I've approached this, I've really enjoyed it. It was fun, it was definitely a challenge and it also taught me a few things about blogging and/or writing. First off, if you have a specific target it's amazing how you can make yourself achieve that - especially if you're doing it in the public gaze. Secondly, there are as many different ways of approaching blogging as there are people who choose to blog. Thirdly, you have nothing to lose by attempting something and keeping on attempting it. I'm sure there are other lessons I have learned, but these will have to do for now.

Were there any downsides to the challenge? What I would say is that I found it quite daunting trying to visit blogs, comment when I felt I had something to say, and respond in a meaningful way to the people who left comments on my blog.

It's also quite a task trying to sort out which blogs to visit and I still have feelings of regret that there are many more participating blogs that I didn't visit than which I did. But such is life. One can only have the greatest respect for the Challenge "officials" who did visit every blog. At this point it would also be appropriate to thank those who organise this challenge. Such things do not happen without a lot of hard work.

So would I do it again? It's easy to say now that I would because April 2015 is such a long way off and anything can happen between now and then. But next time, I'll be much better organised, I'll write everything way in advance, I'll schedule posts so I've got more time to visit other blogs AND I'll set aside time every day to get back to people who comment on my blog. Oh yes, next time it's going to be perfect. What's that you say? Pigs might fly...well, yes, but better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.

Because my A to Z entries had music and memories as a theme I'd like to sign off with a piece of music which I have chosen simply because I like it.