I originally started this blog because I bought a boat – a Folksong – last year. (I had my first sight of her, one year ago tomorrow).
There was plenty of work to do on her but I knew of no other Folksong owners with experience of these boats, so, in the mode of the times, I conducted a search online. I set up a three-month blog. This worked, and although there are only a few owners out there who found me, I am very grateful to them for there assistance. I hope I can repay their kindness as time goes on.
At the end of three months, I had had the good advice I sought, made the necessary decisions about ‘Blue Mistress’ and was ready to close the blog. However, someone, (from Seattle, I think, or was it Vancouver?), suggested I continue, and I got interested in the possibilities of sharing information that is of interest to members of my widespread family – widespread in both age and distance, to friends I know well and also to those people I have never met but are interested in the subject (maritime history as told and recorded by my ancestors). All the while, ‘Blue Mistress’ has been the thread that holds the blog together.
At the end of a further four months, this too has proved a positive exercise. I have found a new respect for my great grandfather, been able to informally share details with my family that would otherwise have laid in a box between the covers of a notebook, and learnt a great deal about writing online.
There have been four main lessons:
Lesson one: Very, very few people are really interested in what you write;
Lesson two: Even then, their interest varies with the subject – (common sense this). They don’t care about everything you write, only some things;
Lesson three: People you know (especially those you are related to) are particularly critical – and often miss the point. (Who was it who said that we think of ourselves as we see us in the future, other people see us as we were in the past? For those who know us well, our past can be very vivid, clear and of mixed interpretation).
Lesson four: It is possible to become bored with the word ‘I’ – perhaps bored is the wrong word but certainly restricted. In the end, who really cares about ‘I’ except ‘me’. On the other hand, the possibilities of writing in the third person are infinite.
So, for the next three months, Bill is going to stand back and join you, the reader, and see if he can retain your interest by reflecting a way of life he loves. Although ‘Blue Mistress’ will continue to be a unifying thread, his intention is to learn what are to him new ways of writing about sailing and the sea. If you care to come along, he hopes you will enjoy it – just for the love of it.