Walking the Berkshires has reached its 5th Blogiversary today. Traditionalist readers are welcome to send gifts of wood (I accept nickels and nutmegs only, please). There have been 1233 posts and 2246 comments since I began blogging here, although now that I link back to Facebook many additional comments happen there. I am pleased by this ratio, since I write as much to connect as to inform (or entertain).
Particularly with regard to connections, I have made some very special friendships along the way. One longtime reader gifted me with his homemade Single Malt Marmalade, and another welcomed me to his home and showed me where my ancestors are buried. Yet another has shared an extensive interest in Revolutionary war history and reintroduced me to the world of historical reenacting. And I have met someone very special who was a longtime admirer from afar and who has opened my eyes to the possibility for new found joy. All this and more, from these eclectic and erratic musings. I am very grateful.
In retrospect, I really had no idea what WTB would come to mean to me, nor the form and content it would assume over time. With interests as broad as mine, readers are as likely to encounter a series on a little known episode in American history as they are an irreverent look at Presidential fashion (the one post that launched an Instalanche) or the occasional revelation of personal transition. It is a lot to ask, and I am touched that so many of you check in from time to time for whatever the catch of the day (or every third day or so) may be.
I do have some personal favorite posts. If I were to update this 2008 vintage greatest hits list, it might well include the following:
There are some additional posts of mine that attract daily visits from people searching for information on obscure historical incidents for which WTB has become something of an authority by virtue of what I have aggregated and analyzed. Searching for "Morro Castle Disaster" leads to this post, while I get considerable traffic drawn to a post regarding this image of Canadians at Vimy Ridge. Without question, the casual visitors are largely looking for images, but some of them stay for content. Even when I have added nothing for days, there are 200+ unique viewers and 400+ page views here.
That last observation has lead me to think long and hard about the future of WTB. There was a time when I felt driven to write something new every day - a time, it is fair to point out, when blogging was an escape as much as a passion. I have other interests, now, and outlets for my writing. It has been good while since I had the time and interest to delve into another long and engaging historical series, much as I still have that interest. Much of my nature writing ends up in the local paper. WTB has eased into comfortable middle age, and is resting on its laurels. Perhaps it has lost its edge.
In any case, I have no plans to discontinue this blog, but I will be taking some time to consider its future. Whichever way that path leads, I will be glad of your company.