Monday, July 27, 2009

The Wonders of the Blog-O-Sphere

Like many other folks out there, I follow quite a few blogs.
Some of the owners write daily, or near daily.
Some once a month, or less.
Most are like me, writing only when they have something to say or share, which may be daily or only once a week.
Of course, there are a few that are written by people that I do know on a close personal level and had been friends with long before that first photograph and intro words were written and posted onto this blog. The majority, though, are the writings of strangers.

They all have a unique story to tell. Each post gives me a tiny insight into the writer, and consequently, a peek into their lives. The happiness or the challenges they face. Anger and sadness that must be vented before acceptance or forgiveness can ease their minds. I follow along, a voyeur of sorts I suppose, crying or cheering them on. I laugh when they share something funny. I add a comment or two if inspired. I've noticed I only follow the blogs of the people who I think I would have befriended had I the chance to meet them face to face. Regular people, but with something to share. People who type words onto a computer screen not knowing who will come across them and find something useful. Real people sharing real stories. I don't follow any that are blatantly political, pushy on the religion, or trying to sell me something. Yes, a couple have an agenda, but they also have a heart and a soul. I like to think of these fellow writers as friends, or at least acquaintances, that I check in with periodically. Many also have added me to their reading lists, and we often comment back and forth giving advice, encouragement, or a laugh when needed.

Let me tell you a little about them. (I am not going to put links here. You know you can find them on my profile page, or by clicking on their photo in the right hand sidebar.) I will start with the two young men I have just stumbled upon. Chris and Todd. Two good looking young men (well, they ARE younger than me!) who decided to travel around the U.S. by hitch hiking, leaving all their possessions behind except what they could carry on their backs. They both had their reasons, and their ideologies were similar, so they decided to travel together this summer. As of the latest postings, there has been a bit of a fallout and each has gone their own way for now. I can't wait to read more of the past postings and look at more of their photos. I have just started following them, so I don't have the whole story, BUT they both write intelligent thought provoking posts. I have figured out they both love nature and people watching. Ahhh... I think I will enjoy these two bloggers immensely! I feel I have picked up a new novel and can't wait to dive into their travel stories.

Keeping with the Adventurous types-- Roz Savage is a woman who is rowing solo across the Pacific. She posts daily as long as she has a signal on her satellite phone. Sure, she does have an environmental platform, but most of her writings are about her voyage. Very interesting, and I get a daily glimpse of the ocean, which I haven't seen in much too long!

Suleo is a bit on the outside of my "comfort level". He is a college graduate who chose to live without money, and has done so for a number of years. He lives in a cave, getting all his possessions from charity or dumpster diving. Yeah, food too. He will not accept money. This is a religious thing for him. His writing is brainy and insightful, even if it does have quite a bit of religious fervor thrown in. I read for his experiences; and the people in his life are colorful. He gives his readers a chance to see life from the homeless persons point of view. His last post pretty much summed things up by saying most of Americans are rude, selfish, S.O.B's (although he took five paragraphs to say it!).

Jenna is a young (mid-20's) gal who decided the homestead life is her calling. She works for corporate America during the day; while raising chickens, sheep, a goat, angora rabbits, two pack / sled dogs, and bees the rest of the time. She also has successful gardens and taught herself to bake, knit, sew, and play the fiddle. I "found" her after reading her first (so far, only) book Made From Scratch where she posted her blog address near the end. She is vivacious and loves everything life can give her. I have never heard anyone talk of chicken shit and sheep manure with such humor! She is single, but she seems to have picked up a number of suitable male followers. Hopefully one will eventually come along that sweeps her off her feet.

Pepe' is a fellow Montanan who's passion is climbing mountains. Another blog I live vicariously through! When he isn't climbing, he posts about sports and anti-smoking legislation. Occasionally he will throw in a movie review, too. Some day I hope he and I will meet, if just to say we did. Hell, he is only a few hours away and I do go to Missoula fairly often. I'll be sure to let you know if we do!

Sandra is a stay at home mom of two, a wife to an Air Force man, awesome cook, and story teller. She came to the U.S. from South Africa, after growing up in Portugal. Her writing is fresh and from the heart. I wish she were my neighbor!

Rock Chef is just a joy to read! He lives in Cantebury, Kent; UK. He and his wife are very much in love, and he shares their banter from time to time. He also plays guitar (has posted a few vid's) and has a bit of a whacked out sense of humor. Not many postings go by where I am not laughing out loud. Really! I look forward to his posts more than all the others. The comments section of his posts are a Do Not Miss item, too. He is truly One in a Million.

Only Half Nuts, or OHN as her readers have dubbed her, is the mother of three sons- two of whom are out of the nest and on their own. Her and I have shared many of the same "what should I do about ____" quandaries. She is the wife of a police man who last year had a cancer scare. That is when I first started to read. All is good now, but I enjoyed her writing style so much I just kept following. She is straight forward and pulls no punches. We'd get along great, I think. I wish she were my OTHER neighbor!

Joe and Albert are talked about often in my own writing, but Joe's photos are much better than mine! Albert was a lucky find at a writers conference and I am blessed to have become his friend. His blog is about his daily life living off the grid. He is living my dream!

Andrea (who I have met once, but is a good Facebook friend) writes about geocaching and life in Great Falls.

AND, all the others. A mixture of my other interests. Garden advice, living on a budget, recipes, movie or restaurant reviews, and writing. Some have personal anecdotes and family life intertwined. I read about life in Alaska and many of the lower states, as well as three Providences of Canada.

I thank everyone who has shared a bit of themselves, whether they know I was there or not.
I also thank everyone who has happened by my little piece of the Blog-O-Sphere. Over 2000 visits so far! I hope those visitors had a pleasant experience.
I especially thank all my regular visitors who stop by often, and my cyber friends who comment. You are the ones that let me know at least SOME of my posts are being read!

Now that you made it through all of THAT, my next post will be a lighthearted update on the garden and confessions of my murderous behavior.


Rock Chef said...

Aw, thanks for the mention!

You are like me here - I only follow the blogs of people that I would like to meet face to face, and there are some great people out there.

I will check out some of these people when I get a chance.

Jamie D. said...

Ooo...murder most foul, eh?

Thanks for highlighting some of your followers - I'll certainly be checking out a few of those you listed!

Twas a great idea...I should do this on my blog too.

Shoveling Ferret said...

Oh no! More blogs for me to follow! ;)

The Friar said...

What a great post. I feel like I've just joined a giant long lost family.

I'll confess, I tend to just pop on write my shtick for the day and ramble on. Usually reading a thing or two when I come across them, but now you've opened me up to a whole host of people out there. Thanks.

Glad to hear your enjoying Todd and my posts. I've been perusing yours since you signed our guestbook and definitely intend to keep looking in when internet comes my way; along with quite a few of the others you've mentioned here.

Anyway, thanks again for the recommends.