My original aim was to have an online journal for our own use, so that we could look back on all the places we had been. I just started with a few pictures and a brief description of where we went. Then, after seeing how others were using the medium, I started adding my thoughts about our experiences. Eventually, I had to get a voice recorder so I could capture those fleeting ideas that occurred as we were moving down the road but slipped out of my mind before we stopped and I could jot them down. If you see a small object on a red lanyard around my neck as I am riding, it is the recorder. Then VSP showed me how to incorporate Google Maps in the blog and, later, Butch and Teresa suggested adding mileages. This is pretty much the format that I use today.
Somewhere along the way, I found out that the blog I was doing just for us had attracted a following. In addition to friends, people I was meeting for the first time would tell me they were riding along with us. Suddenly, I felt an obligation to others that made me keep at it through thick and thin.
Today, developing a blog post goes something like this:
- get both cameras and upload the pictures to the computer
- start a new draft post and build the map of the day's travels
- select the photos to use, reduce the size and upload them to the blog
- if we are at an event, publish the preliminary blog for those who couldn't be there
- transcribe the recorder notes to Notepad
- using the notes and photos, write the story
- add captions to the photos
- proofread and edit
- publish the blog and let Sandy proofread again
- make final corrections
There are a number of different blogs maintained by various VROC friends. I set up a blog of blogs to help people keep track of who is posting what. Most have separate blogs for separate trips or rallies but I have kept just one for all our travels. I have since added a couple for non-riding things such as my letters to the editor. Some other's blogs are more photo oriented, Sherm's being a prime example. I stand in awe of his being able to capture the moment in pictures. I prefer to talk about our experiences with the photos as garnish, so to speak. Each of us has our own style.
I am not sure why I decided to post this, probably just to share those nights when I hide away in a motel room somewhere working on capturing our memories. At times, when in the heat of a rally or when I am tired at the end of a trip, I get behind but I always eventually get up to date. If you are among those who follow our wanderings, I hope we can keep you entertained for another thousand posts. And if you have any experiences to share, start your own blog. We'd all enjoy seeing what you have to say.