Day 661 – Reminder to self

We were in the pool again until after 9 this evening. That’s why this blog post is so late.
Sorry, I know you’ve been desperately hitting the refresh buttons on your respective browsers.

Is this January hotter than previous Januarys (Januaries?), or is it just our collective imagination?

Anyway, while we were cooling down this evening, floating and gazing at passing satellites, I realised that I need to get a photo of the pool at night. I mean, I’ve already done that here, but I’m thinking of chucking the drone up to get a proper overhead, rather than one from the bedroom window. When I read this, maybe I’ll remember.

In that post above, I suggested that the pool light was a gimmick, and it is, but it’s a damn cool gimmick, and nightswimming (which deserves a quiet night; I’m not sure all these people understand) is made much more fun by being lit from within.

The heat and the floating have left me a little tired, and I suspect that I will be heading up for an early night ahead of the first full week of school…

Or I might end up watching the Spanish Super Cup final.

Who can say?

Day 648 – Bloggery on 6000 miles…: an explanation

As regular readers will know, the ten year anniversary of a post every single day on 6000 miles… came around just a few days ago, and lo, there was much jubilation and dancing and the citizens did celebrate in the streets and slaughter the prodigal son.

Or something.

It was actually a rather diluted event for me, given that I took something of a break from writing (if not delivering) blog posts over the Christmas and New Year period. So the post in the first line up above was not written on the actual day, but rather a week or so beforehand. That might seem a bit sad and maybe even a bit of a fraud for such an auspicious occasion, but it did mean that while the blog continued in pre-written form, I was able to step back and relax a little.

That last sentence does make it sound like writing here is a chore, and there are certainly times when it does feel that way. But generally, it’s a positive experience. For me, at least: you’re the poor buggers who have to read this stuff.

The anniversary and the break got me thinking (between beers) about this blog and why I write it. And before anything further is said on that topic, I will always go back to Brian Micklethwait’s wisdom which underpins everything on 6000 miles…

My most important reader is me.

Bit selfish, sure. But I have addressed that on several occasions, not least here. I can look back on what was happening in my life and what was on my mind at any given moment, much as someone who writes a diary could.
And so I guess I could actually write a diary, but how archaic is that in this so-called [checks notes] “21st Century”?
You can’t put cool photos or music videos in a diary, you’d literally have to tear a page out and post it to someone if you wanted to share your thoughts and read what you were saying, and then if you needed to look up that important thing you learnt about LEDs on curling stones in 2018, you’d literally have to flick through many pages to find it.

So, no. In this case, pixels are better.

But in actual fact, while that quote above very much represents the foundation of the blog, the bricks and mortar on top of it have brought me so much more. Writing here is often a cathartic experience: be it by sharing something I want others to enjoy or be aware of, getting something off my chest, directing anger at annoying people, directing ridicule at silly people, popping an idea out into the world or just momentarily escaping from a difficult period in real life.
I’ve been through deaths (not personally), illnesses (personally), various employments, holidays, parenting, relocation, education, political upheavals, historic events and – gasp – an awful lot of everyday life while I’ve been writing this blog, and yes, while it might one day be interesting to revisit my thoughts on each of these things in the future, sometimes it was the actual documenting of them that helped get me through those moments.

So sure, I’ll happily overlook the days when it seems like a chore to get something out on here.

But then, if those sort of days begin to outweigh the good ones for any reasonable period of time, I’ll definitely take a long hard look at whether I want to continue with this each and every day. Sadly for you, dear readers, I haven’t come anywhere close to that thus far. And it’s been 10 years. (Did I already mention that?)

So as the line from that song they wrote about me goes:

Here’s to the future ’cause we got through the past

Thanks for being here and thanks for reading. Let’s look forward to the next ten years together.

Day 647 – Last one

This post marks the last of my pre-written holiday blogs. All the glitz and the glamour of Christmas and New Year (and that 10 year thing) is over, and it’s back to real life in the South African sunshine, through the rain and mud of the UK, withstanding the draconian clampdown on individual freedom in China or grinding out the daily struggle which is trying not to be killed by a nasty creature in Australia. Sorry about having to break that to you, wherever you are.

I hope something exciting and blogworthy happens today, so that when I plug myself back in tomorrow, there’s something to write about.

If not*, it looks like we could be in for yet another 364 days of the usual bilge.

Happy days!

See you tomorrow, folks!

* some might say “either way”, here

Day 646 – Hangover?

I know that many people will be waking up with a hangover after the huge celebrations yesterday.

What they might have missed, during (or because of? lol) their festive boozing – is that it’s also the start of a New Year today. I don’t know why I capitalised New and Year like that. Maybe just that I suppose I would do that if I was starting a fresh sentence, having put a very large full stop at the end of 2021.

Wouldn’t that be great?

And who knows? Maybe there’s been a dramatic breakthrough that I don’t know about because I wrote this post in mid-December. I doubt it, but I forever live in hope.

Anyway, some Genpayne, a phat bacon butty on white bread, a thick double espresso, a sachet of rehydrate, a can of Red Bull and 2 litres of water* will have you up, running and ready to face 2022 in no time at all.

Happy New Year, everyone.

* I’m not a doctor

Day 645 – Ten. Years.

Hello, and thanks for joining me on this special day.

Why is this day so special?
Well, by my best calculations, it marks 10 years of continual blogging on this blog.

Yes, that’s at least one post a day on 6000 miles… each and every day for an entire decade.

Yep. 10 whole years.

I’ve been blogging here since early 2008 (and before that at the now defunct ballacorkish.net), but it was only at the end of 2011 that this ‘post a day’ nonsense began.

I’m not sure why I decided to start doing this on 31st December 2011 – in all likelihood, I didn’t make any conscious decision at that point to try to achieve anything other than putting pixel to screen for that day. It just continued from there until it became “a thing”.

It’s a bit sad that the very first post (of this series, at least) isn’t particularly exciting or remarkable, but I guess that’s what you get with this blog: the occasional flash of brilliance amongst all the disappointing mundanity. So a bit like being at a Michael McIntyre show, but with an occasional flash of brilliance.

Since then, we’ve been through a smorgasbord of football, music, parenting, history, geography, travel, photography, beagling, South Africanisms, beer, politics, microbiology, (hopefully most of) a pandemic, and of course, several (or more) lighthouses.

Yes, yes. I’m fully aware that other people have blogged every day for much longer. But they’re not me. I did this and that’s why I’m crowing about it. I’m quote impressed with this achievement.

And I haven’t been keeping track. I just spotted this upcoming anniversary when someone asked back in September – with some degree of incredulity and dismay in their voice – just how long I’d been doing this for.

But the real suckers heroes are you guys who come and read this stuff. Thanks for being here, commenting (when that was a thing) (you can still do it on the Facebook page) and just generally being supportive.

And of course, huge thanks to The Guru for all his patience, expertise and technical support. I couldn’t have done it without him, which gives you all someone else to blame for this.

Here’s to ten more years.

Possibly.