If you follow this blog (hi mom!) you may have noticed a took a few months off from writing. Ok, four months. At first I felt guilty. I hate letting projects languish unfinished. But really there’s nothing to finish—I reminded myself a blog is an ongoing, personal project that doesn’t have deadlines or requirements or expectations. So with that in mind, I’m forging ahead and rethinking things a bit.
When I started this blog over the summer, I was fresh off my first big solo wilderness backpacking trip and ready to publish my new-found knowledge on a shiny new blog!! Like I do with all projects, I dove in headfirst: I read articles about post-formatting, learned what “search engine optimization” is, and even prematurely signed up for an Amazon affiliate account (only to immediately delete it). But after just few months of trying to blog this way, I remembered that I detest marketing and almost nothing I do in life is “optimized” for efficiency. Case in point: I don’t even use social media in my personal life and somehow I thought I would enjoy posting weekly blog updates to Twitter. It just wasn’t fun or sustainable.
To say nothing of the pandemic. As COVID case numbers rose in the deepest heart of winter, I couldn’t bring myself to reflect on past trips. For a while, flipping through pictures of crowded bars or packed trains was nostalgic. But when I thought about the dozens and dozens of strangers I’ve crossed paths and traded stories (and germs!) with, it felt like mourning.
Now, like March in Minnesota, there’s a sense of cautious optimism. We enjoy the weak sunlight on the first 50 degree day, knowing it might—and probably will—snow again. But we start to dream of summer because spring will stubbornly, slowly, push through.
On Friday, Jonny and I looked through old photos from our travels. There was still that sense of nostalgia and a twinge of unreality in seeing an image of a packed restaurant in Madrid. But we’re allowing ourselves to plan our next adventures, and I’m feeling ready to write it all down.