Well, it’s been quite a ride. Four years ago, I first started laying down my thoughts, photos, and ramblings with digital ink on this blog.
October 2002 was a completely different time for me. I had only been in Indonesia a few months, and everything still held that glistening sheen of wonderment and interest. The Bali bombing (first one) had just happened, the mess in Iraq had not yet begun, bird flu was basically unheard of, and the hearts of those taken during the Asian Tsunami were still beating.
All of my belongings could fit into a couple of suitcases.
These last four years have brought about more change in my life than any in the History of Me. Changes which never reach the light of day in this blog, at least not at first glance.
In 2002 I had no idea what a ‘blog’ was or how to even begin one. I had basically no web designing skills, didn’t have any web space of my own, and had very little interest in photography as an artform. (and used a 4mp Canon s40).
All I knew was that I needed some way to document my time spent in this crazy, beautiful, exotic land called Java. Emails were the method of choice in the beginning, but soon I felt as though I were force-feeding my detailed accounts of dealing with the food, traffic, and language barriers to my friends and family. I craved something with more control, more documentation, and possibly even the ability to offer some perspectives to other expats contemplating life in Indonesia.
I started out using Blogger on a .blogspot account. I knew very little of what I was doing, and if something broke, I had a hell of a time fixing it. I look back on my earlier writing and realized that it didn’t really sink in to that 25 year old that whatever is posted becomes permanent in the Blogosphere. I sounded so, well, naive I guess. Sometimes I’d have a bad day with traffic or situations where the locals were driving me crazy, and just rant about it without any caution thrown to the Google wind. Even though I had cooled off about the situation, two years later someone visiting the blog may have gotten the impression I was a prick.
Two years ago, armed with a bit more self-taught knowledge of web design and some basic CSS skills, I started using WordPress on my own hosted web space. Although the layout and design has changed a few times, things are basically the way they were in 2004.
For quite some time, I’ve struggled with the dilemma of sharing more of my personal life or maintaining a more streamlined photoblog. People have given advice for both sides of the coin, and thus far I’ve kept many aspects of my life away from this site. I still am unresolved on this topic.
I plan to continue blogging and maintaining this site well into the future, but time will tell what other changes may come about and whether I’ll be inclined to share them with the world or not. I’ve lost a bit of that naivety, and in some ways have become a completely different person. Then again, who doesn’t look back on their past self knowing their shadow seems a bit different?
University may have been my formal education, but these past four years have been my life’s education.
How has life changed for you in the past four years?