Seven years ago today I stepped into the blossoming world of blogging. I always like to mark this anniversary because it was through blogging that I got to know and become friends with so many wonderful people.
The title of my first blog page was Inland Shipwreck, an oxymoron of a name that I came up with while living in the middle of Alberta at the time, and it was hosted by the now defunct MSN Spaces. At the time, almost everybody was using that service because it was so easy to access through one's MSN Messenger account.
I published my first post on Feb. 1, 2005 and it took a few weeks before I started to notice any traffic in my visitor stats. Of course I forgot to set my page to public at first, so once I changed that then I started to see the occasional comment on my posts. I think everyone can agree that it feels nice to see comments on your material. It's like: "Yay! People want to share their thoughts on something I wrote!"
Slowly at first I developed a small following of regular readers, and in good karma I would read their blogs and leave comments. As time went on, my regular group of readers expanded and it soon became a daily ritual for all of us to surf to each other`s pages and leave comments. I think it became an addiction for many of us. At the time there were so many users on Spaces that it was far too difficult to follow every new blogger out there, so eventually my friends and I just started to stay within our little circle. It was like a friendly community of like-minded bloggers and it really was the Golden era. We even had a name for our little group: Spaces Boulevard.
I made so many friends through that blog of mine, and I don't just mean cyber friends. In many cases a lot of us got to know each other outside of Spaces, exchanging emails, instant messages, text messages, phone calls, exchanging holiday and birthday cards, and even meeting in person. I can't imagine my life without some of those people. You know who you are.
And then Facebook came along. The bubble burst. Suddenly one could write notes directly on Facebook, and easily share photos, so there was no longer a need for a blogging page. All of my blogging friends migrated over to Facebook and I went with them. Suddenly we were all able to share so much more with each other and that became the new addiction. It wasn't long after that Spaces eventually folded and was swallowed up by, what was it? Wordpress? I admit that it kind of sucks that all the work I put into that page is now lost in cyberspace, but at least I kept my friends.
Then, about three years ago, a few of us caught the blogging bug again. The constantly changing Facebook made it a hassle to post neatly formatted blogs, and, speaking for myself, I wanted something a little more formal. That's when I learned about Blogger. By that time I had moved back to my home on BC's West Coast, so the name Inland Shipwreck no longer applied (though I kept it as an email address). After humming and hawing for a while over a name, a light bulb came on and The Wandering Oak became my new moniker.
The rest, as they say, is history.
Memories from my Inland Shipwreck days.
The Wandering Oak