One year of blogging.

So, the blog.  Blogging about blogging is probably like writing about writing, which might be terribly indulgent, but it seems appropriate at the one year mark.

I’m very ambivalent about blogging.  It seems like it would be great–no overhead, a vast potential audience, blog from anywhere. But there are a number of problems.  The notion of writing about one’s life to, oh, everyone on the planet, especially mixed in with all the other noise of the web seems daunting at best.  I much preferred the zine world, where one could write about anything and then schlep the little DIY pub to ye olde zine shop, zine distros, etc.  The zine audience was controlled, so there was some privacy and therefore, maybe more authenticity in the writing.  There’s something also very “Hey!  Lookit me, lookit me!” about a blog, and I’m usually disappointed by the writing in popular blogs.

Still, it’s an outlet.  A few of the virtual conversations I’ve had with folks in the last year have sustained me, mostly other expats telling me that they get it, that they were in the same boat.  (Thanks to you!)    It’s something to do while trying to create a space for myself in a new country.  BPRB offers WordPress practice, and let’s face it, one’s gotta try to keep up these days.

So after a week of two of consideration, I’ve decided to keep on blogging despite not showing up in the WordPress search bar under the name of my blog, which baffles me.  The IT husband can’t figure it out either.  It took quite a long time for Google to find me (months) but I haven’t found anything in forums that indicates that WordPress takes a year or more.

I’ve thought about doing an “after a year in the UK” post, but I think I’d be redundant.  For what it’s worth though, in a nutshell: the house is just about finished, is on the market, and we will possibly buy another that we’ve put an offer on, which is risky without me having solid work.  It seems crucial to be in a less extreme environment though.  The job search continues.  I’m still playing with various combinations of teaching qualifications and always have tons of forms that must be filled out yesterday.  Still do not have the driver’s license, and need to get that.   Am glad to at least be working part-time, even if it is just admin, and earning a few pennies.  Writing some reviews for Medway Broadside, and monthly book chat with the marvelous peeps of the Medway Book Club.

The romantic expat life, eh?   The biggest realization in the last year is that I’m in a weird position being an expat who isn’t with a bit of disposable income.  Those expats and trailing spouses can travel, do local things, and the TS can take afford to take classes if need be.  I’ve found that talking to other expats can be awkward because they don’t understand that I’ve moved here on a shoestring and they usually assume that we’re in a different bracket.

I wonder about taking two steps back, or in this case, about twenty steps back when it comes to work, whether it will make sense in the long run.  C. and I have no idea where we’ll be living in two years, five, ten.  When establishing a house and home is so important, this feels shaky instead of exciting.  I crave a home base more than anything else now, and have learned that I still like travel, a bit of adventure, but want to feel like I have a home and a life to return to.

In early September, I always go back to Rilke’s poem, “Autumn Day.”  (Scroll 2/3 way down for Edward Snow translation, which is best, in my opinion.)   “Lord, it is time.  The summer was immense.” and “Who has no house now, will never build one.”   The summer was indeed immense–an April of sun, and then the endless light of May, June, July.  In fall, a descent, permission to consider mysteries and troubling questions, to retreat.  Sleep so hard we wake not knowing who we are; darkness, and what we might find there.

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