Sunday, 19 February 2012
Here are my son and daughter-in-law this morning, a glorious morning, plodding steadily up one of the many hills in the beautiful place where I live.
I sat in the sunshine, watching them, realising how closely their efforts resembled my own in recent weeks.
It's been a long, hard and infinitely tiresome plod to get back on line, and I have no intention of adding to the boredom factor by writing about it. I will just say that those 'change your provider with one click' adverts are a little misleading.
So, no blogging since mid-January, because I could only access my neighbour's broadband signal by crouching up against my bedroom window - which is all right for the odd emergency e-mail, but for nothing else.
After several weeks of not blogging I have turned to other writings, revisiting some old, unpublished works which appeared to me new and fresh, almost unremembered. I have become immersed in lengthier writing, and I have a new journal form as well. So I have to think, as all of us do at some stage, why write the blog?
The blog reaches parts that other writings do not; in particular, people whom I have come to regard as friends in cyberland. You know who you are, and I'm really sorry if you thought I had deserted you.
The blog is the most direct form of writing I have used. There are journals which are entirely my own, but over many years there has also been a surpring amount of published work. This has always had an editor between me and any readers, so that I have felt, and still feel at least one step removed from it.
The blog feels permanent, while other published work, even in book form, is essentially ephemeral. Unless the whole system collapses, or someone else manages to wipe out Relatively Retiring it will stay there, perhaps accessible to future grandchildren as yet unthought of (as far as I know).
The blog is intensely personal, and sometimes it is therapeutic. It is probably the one form of public writing which can be carried out in total freedom, although I, like many of us, have attracted trolls, or at least one particularly malicious troll who stopped me in my tracks for a while.
Having stopped, because of trolls or technology, it's not easy to get going again, but like my young folk here today, I will plod on. The pull seems irresistible.