Well, you’re definitely by now sick to death of all the emails and messages you’ve been getting about the new EU rules which came into effect today. As someone said, “It’s been a good opportunity to clean out our inboxes.” I was joking about this with a pal, when I realized that I don’t have a clue as to whether ever so humble blogs like this are supposed to stand up and be counted too, so I guess that I should say something … just in case!
I have absolutely no idea whether any of you receive my posts by email. This blog is certainly not big enough now to run its own mailing list. Perhaps WordPress sends them out. I have no idea. I type out random thoughts and stick in some photos, and press go. I probably need to learn more about cyber-stuff. What I can promise you is that, if in future I do begin a mailing list (and everyone tells me I should), any info I have as a result will be only for the purpose of sending you information about the blog, and no way would it ever be shared with anyone else. I hate that when it happens to me, so why would I do it to anyone else?
To date, this blog has been a labor of love. It’s served as a business card, but it hasn’t made me a cent directly. That might change, who knows, but I will never promote any product which I don’t believe in. I’ve written gratis about products I’ve enjoyed and used, and I will continue to do that too.
It’s perhaps the right moment to explain a couple of other things too. I recently changed the description of Islandmomma, here and elsewhere, to call it “an old-fashioned blog.”
Some travel blogs (be they nomad-centered, or destination blogs) are aimed at being travel guides, giving you where to stay/how to get there information. Bloggers get free meals/accommodation/trips in return for writing about the place/event; some even get paid as well, the very top ones, that is. All of which is fine, travel magazines have been doing the same thing for decades.
But I didn’t want this blog to be like that, and I struggled with the concept for years. I didn’t want to be in marketing, I wanted to write.
If I write about a hotel/boat/restaurant/product/whatever, I want it to be because I’ve had a particular experience and want to share it. More often than not, the places or trips I’ve written about had no idea I was going to write anything. Just once, a bar gave me a free meal after they’d seen what I wrote via Facebook. That struggle was partly why I took the sabbatical. Even though, on the few occasions I accepted an invitation to review something, I was absolutely honest in my opinion, and always explained that I’d received a “freebie,” I still felt guilty. Happily for me, I haven’t done it that much, and even more happily I was outstandingly lucky in that everywhere I was invited to was first class, and so my conscience was totally clear. I thought about refusing any future offers, but given the positive experiences I had, that might be foolish, and I might miss out on something else outstanding, like the ones I had in Ireland, or Lanzarote or even London. What I will promise is to continue to make no bones about the fact that I was invited. In the case of my last post, for instance, I was invited, not directly by the crew or owners, but by a friend who does work for them. They had no idea that I write or Instagram, but I still made it clear in what I wrote.
Right now I am still trying to sort out all the notes I made over the last 3 years. Most of them are not fresh enough for me to want to write anything now, after all this time, but once I have cleared them, and dropped in those posts which I think still have relevance, the blog will return to being its “old-fashioned” self – that is, more or less in chronological order, and a bit opinionated. The opinionated and new part will come with thoughts about ageing ….. something about which I know first hand, and think are worth sharing. It links to travel and sport and other things which so many folk drop out of as they get older. But first to catch up …. The journey is life, after all.
Oh and the photo? Well I usually use post-appropriate pics, which means jeans and shorts and such, so I thought I would show that I can scrub up ok too.