As you can see from the website address, I’m using WordPress to host my blog. It’s a relatively nice venue for people like me, who feel like sharing a story. It’s not as intuitive a platform as I’d like to have, but I’ve always been a “what you see is what you get” kind of guy. Someone who’s not interested in a lot of bells and whistles. It’s a place to tell my story and that was pretty much all I was looking for. (I’m sure if I were smarter, or more patient, I’d be able to do a lot more in the way of presentation, but that’s a subject for another time!) ;o)
But that’s really not what this post is about. It’s to let you know a little about some of the other interesting bloggers that I’ve run across over the short time I’ve been posting. And therein lies the one big issue I have with WordPress. There’s no easy way for the general public to browse through the site! Unless you’re registered (presumably to create one of your own), the only two ways you’d know about a blog are: 1) if someone invited you to it; or 2) you happened to find it on a search engine when you were researching a certain topic. Oh yeah, there’s a third option: at the bottom of the main WordPress page, there’s a “Freshly Pressed” link that’ll give you a glimpse at some of the most recent blog posts. But that’s all it is – a glimpse!
Once you’re behind the curtain … once you’ve registered with WordPress (presumably to create your own blog) … your browsing options are significantly expanded. Beyond the “Freshly Pressed” feature I mentioned, we bloggers can do a subject search through all the other thousands of blogs being hosted on the WordPress site. I am presuming here, but I think that option’s available to create a sense of “community” amongst all of us bloggers. We can find others who are telling a similar story, follow them, and post on each other’s sites. It’s certainly helped me realize that I’m not alone in wanting to ditch my current life for a different one!
So I thought I’d take a few minutes and talk about some of the other people and sites I’ve run across behind the WordPress curtain. They’re telling some wonderful stories, offering up great information and providing some thought-provoking (and quite humorous) insight on everyday life.
By the way, I’ve realized two things about the lifestyle I’ve chosen to follow in a few months. First, I’m not alone – I said that before. There are a number of people who’ve decided to go out on the road and share their story. None of them are doing it for the reason I’ve decided to, but I guess that’s not really important, is it? Second – most of them are a helluva lot younger than I am! Not that I’m having second thoughts – I just think I have to do a bit more planning throughout the experience than these other folks have to do.
(A word before I write further – I’m not certain, but the links I’m sharing below might have to be approved by the people included in the following list. Hopefully they allow that to happen.)
Man.Earth.Machine is written by a young guy named Jon, who set out from North Carolina last April and has made it across country while living in the back of his converted Toyota Tacoma. He’s on an adventure and the photos he’s shared are proof of how much he’s enjoying himself. His girlfriend Erin has joined him for his latest trek down the Pacific Coast. I am envious of his passion for life (and his youth)! Few words, lots of great pics.
Ellen shares her travel adventure at “Traveling the World Solo“. She’s a 21-year-old Australian who is a registered midwife and has been to ten countries so far. She has plans to see “Greenland, Iceland, Eastern Europe and the Middle East” … all in 2015! She’s just returned home from South Africa and has offered up some great stories.
The couple who share their story on a blog named “Corporate Vagabonds:The Adventures of Riley and Misha” have ditched their jobs to engage in a “prolonged adventure across the United States of America”. Riley is a former accountant … hey, who says us number-crunchers aren’t capable of non-conformity? So far, they’ve been up and down the west coast and have shared some great stories.
The Traveling Rabbit is where Tamara posts her travel stories. She ditched her job and went on the road back in April and has traveled all over the Pacific Northwest. I especially liked her post “Funny things happen when you don’t have a full length mirror“!
BNomadic is written by a gentleman from India who says he is “a devoted bird-watcher, adventurer and travel enthusiast” who manages “the affairs of a society dedicated to conserve wildlife.” If you’re interested in birding, visit his blog – there are some amazing photos!
If I hadn’t found Kristin’s blog, I might not have discovered a book she included on her summmer reading list – “Vagabonding” by Ralph Potts. Okay, I might have found it, but certainly not this soon! (Potts’ website is now saved in my favorites thanks to her.) Kristin has been out on her journey for three years now and shares her thoughts at “Leave and Explore“. I look forward to reading more of posts.
I really like Lisa’s blog, “Scratching the Itch” … she is a “British 20-something” who travels extensively as a geologist. One thing’s unique about her blog – she engages her visitors by asking a question at the end of each post (and gets some wonderful comments as a result). Amazing photos from across the globe, too.
These are just a few of the folks I’ve found. Please, check them out. I’ve also found some thought-provoking blogs about PTSD, authored by a range of people from therapists to sufferers like me. Frank’s post from yesterday introduced me to some other people who let their pets onto the computer … unless they sneak on like Frank did … to tell stories about their lives (and the humans they put up with). I’m now “following” a number of blogs – I get notified when new posts arrive – and some of those people are now following me! I can only hope to offer up as wonderful a story as they’re sharing!
Now, how would you have been able to find these people if you weren’t registered at WordPress? You probably wouldn’t! You’d be hardpressed to find them on Google … they certainly didn’t come up when I searched “vagabonding”, “ditching corporate life”, “adventure travel,” and the like. I think that’s a shame. And that’s not just vagabonding or travel – there are blogs about everything from coin collecting to moustaches to fashion to astronomy! If you’ve got an interest, there’s someone else who’s writing a blog about it!
In my opinion, WordPress would be well served if they viewed their services a bit more expansively. Yes, they’re a platform that enables people to tell a story. But they’d do themselves … and their bloggers … a lot more justice if they opened themselves up to become an online library where non-bloggers can be be entertained, amused, educated, amazed and inspired by everyday people sharing their lives. It’d be nice if they opened up the curtain and let other non-bloggers in to find other people who share their interests. Again, my opinion.