Not long ago I decided to tally up all of the cities I visited during my Year Off: twenty-seven in total, from Dublin to Prague to Paris and London and Evanston, Illinois. I was lucky enough to call Dublin home for almost six months of the Year Off, but I made sure to do a fair amount of wandering during the other six as well. It was an incredible experience, and one that ended too soon. Way too soon.
If I had to trace it all back to a single beginning, it would have to be the day I started writing a blog. Ten years ago this month, actually. “Blog” has to be the single worst word invented to describe something that could change your life, but mine did. It forced me to become a better writer, and sometimes even a better person. Most importantly, though, it allowed me to meet some amazing people, and helped me see parts of the world I never would have otherwise. A tour of the canals of Amsterdam, dinner and lodging in a forest in Wales, a party with the President on Election Night, and a small glimpse of another life in a fair city.
I’ve been meaning to get back into a regular writing routine, mostly to give myself something creative to do. Facebook and Twitter annoy and bore me these days, as they’ve all become a stale echo chamber of the same updates about babies, sports teams, lattes and exercise routines. I like to tell stories, so I’m setting myself a challenge to write on this thing every day during the month of October. I expect I will make it to Friday before failing miserably at this. But I want to show a little respect for the almost-dead art of blogging, because without it, my life would have been a lot less interesting.