I hate jetlag. It makes my head fuzzy, my stomach confused, my sleep patterns unpredictable and I feel as if I am walking on cotton wool surfaces for the first days of jetlaggery. I also find it unsettling when I am back in the UK as my cultural references become more and more disconnected the longer I live on the other side of the world. I think it is even harder for those around me when I am back as what should be familiar is confusing and I forget or do not know things which are routine and mundane to most but a mystery to me.
While I have been challenged by physical and geographical displacement in recent weeks, travelling across the planet and back again and enduring double jetlag, the blog has recently been on its own wanderings and dislocations. Last week, it had one foot in China, one in the US, one firmly planted here and one spare! It is fortunate that geckoes have four feet!
In late July, just before my own feet trundled through Yangon airport and a variety of departure and arrivals gates, I received a message from my blogging friend Beth on Calling the Shots. Beth asked me if I would like to join the Blog Tour on writing process. This was an invitation I was unable to accept unfortunately. The reason for this was because back in March I had been invited on this Blog Tour by a Yangon blogging friend, Cliff. This was the same writing process tour and it resulted in a long process of luxuriating and reflecting in my own writing process and a very long post flitting from butterflies and backstories and a great deal in between!
The way the Blog Tour works, if you accept the “baton” is to use the following four questions which prompt reflection and discussion of our writing process:
1) What am I working on?
2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?
3) Why do I write what I do?
4) How does my writing process work?
As well as being a very interesting process, it is also very helpful to step back a little and work through these questions. And then the deal is to pass the baton on to another blogger or two, or even three. Now, I am sure there would be no repercussions if you were to take the baton a second time and I am sure that I could have happily hopped on board again. However, having thoroughly enjoyed working through the question prompts at great length the first time round, a second run would undoubtedly have resulted in a very boring post! I declined Beth’s offer but looked forward to reading Beth’s post.
Although I would not be rising to the challenge again, in true butterfly style, my mind wandered off as it tends to do………… I wondered, where the Blog Tour had been and what its journey had been before it reached Beth. Following my own post, I had followed its path for a few weeks until the various strands became complicated to follow and I found myself unable to keep track of the different directions it had headed in.
I had passed the baton on to Catherine and Marie who both wrote their posts the week after my post, in Australia and Canada. This was fascinating and I was delighted to watch as the baton moved forward. From their posts, the Blog continued its tour to Audrey in Scotland and Francoise in France. Around the world it continued as a mix of blogging friends and new acquaintances took up the Tour Challenge. It continued in different directions, and was already becoming hard to track. I wanted to comment on all posts but I couldn’t quite keep up as it moved on to Jan and Ellen, who in turn sent it off again to Ronnie in Liverpool, and Renn on the other side of the world! In addition to zipping around so many different places, it morphed into different topics, some breast cancery blogs and others not. But it disappeared from my view and I was left wondering where it had gone, and intrigued to learn.So I was delighted to see the Blog Tour had reached Beth and eagerly followed its path through Beth’s post on Calling the Shots, which directed me to Booby and the beast, Joanna of Hello mo jo and Ann Marie of Chemobrainfog.
I was fascinated by the Blog Tourist wanderings and I started to try and trace its steps back, naively believing that I might find that it led back to one of the strands I had seen. So I started to look backwards, to the post which had introduced Beth and found My decade of running, and http://www.corbininthedell.com/ here. These had travelled from Jill Cooks, via Just Biscuits who had accepted the baton from Mademoiselle Gourmande talking about Rhubarb tartlets and a Blog Tour. I then landed on My simple delights – a blog by a Singaporean who has moved to Spain and i nearly headed off on a tandem (tangents are far less fun 😉 ) on a travelling blog, and when I traced further back was directed me to my part of the world with Life to the Fullest…………………
Indeed, I had been taken back on paths around breast cancer, and then into a world around running, gardening, growing fresh foods for and creative cookery in a whole world of food blogging which I had not know existed eventually even landing on a few blogs from very near my own front door.
The wonderful part of the Blog Tour is that the route is not linear. If we pass the baton on to more than one bloggerista, then it heads off in so many different directions, multiplying and laughing as it lands in unexpected places. I was no nearer to finding if there was a joining point between my post and Beth’s and I realised that it was probably impossible (or at least very time consuming in a land of limited internet) to find out.
It was a journey which suits my butterfly mind so well. My attention is taken, I float off in an unexpected direction and am intrigued and excited by what I learn before I tootle off in another direction. Eventually though, I have to settle back and focus again on the here and now. But for now, I have a mind which has been infused with a fresh zest and a bundle of treasures which I have newly learned.
Thank you, Beth for providing the ticket which took me off on this unexpected journey, especially one which has involved no jet lag!