Spring's here and the rabbit's leading the way again. As soon as the first blossoms appear, my spirit is immediately possessed by an Alice-in-Wonderland-inspired goblin soaking up everything one of my two favourite seasons has to offer (the other one's autumn). Every year my inner elf is guided by the same time-conscious, clothed rabbit. The talking rabbit with a pocket watch. The tweed-jacket rabbit. The stewed rabbit. The in-my-stomach rabbit. I forgot to mention that the gremlin that takes residence inside me is an omnivore. The rabbit's lifespan is very short: from late March until the end of June. Poor rabbit.
However, I do enjoy its company whilst it lasts. Especially this year because instead of leading me down a hole, my little furry, large-eared friend took me on a tour of my cyber-neighbourhood. And the experience was very pleasant. If you're on blogger, you've probably seen the 'Next Blog' option at the top of your computer screen. Ever wondered what lies ahead if you click on it? Hasn't curiosity got the better of you?
Well, it did get the better of me the other day and instead of a hall with locked doors I found a vibrant virtual barrio with open minds. At Rockport 35 RV Park, I met Dianne and Keith who keep readers up to date with the daily goings-on in this town in Texas. At the time of writing the latest news was the birth of Baby Logsdon, a healthy-looking boy who came into this world on 18th March at 6:23pm (these folks are pretty accurate, aren't they are? :-D). The Rockport blog represents that pleasant mix of the quotidian with the extraordinary, a feature that will ring many bells with other fellow bloggers. It's the reporting of a trip to a local vineyard combined with the celebration of St Patrick's Day.
After that short jaunt, rabbit and I came back home (the rule, if any, is that you click on the 'Next Blog' on your own page rather on you neighbour's, otherwise you would be visiting your next-door acquaintance's acquaintance, which would be a bit... odd) and I proceeded to knock on the door of the next tenant on my cyber-block. This one turned out to be Judy's Scraps. Judy is a 'former Navy, and a 43 year survivor of Oral Cancer.' Her blog is an online scrapbook of photos of family and friends. She also collaborates with designers and uses their kits to decorate her pages, which, by the way look very original. This blog showed me the power of cooperation amongst bloggers. I've always been impressed with the organic synergy that materialises when like-minded souls come together, especially when you take into account that their only means of interaction is a keyboard and computer. I'm glad I popped by your blog, Judy. Next time, I'll probably accept your invitation to coffee.
My final stop was at Life's Got Twistered Upside Down, and I'm so happy I left this house for last. You know the offbeat neighbour who polarises people in your local community? Well, this is the one. LGTUD is a wacky space that belongs to a 22-year-old woman with a sense of humour that's really up my street, so it was logical that I stayed for a while to enjoy her writing. First of all, and forgive me if I sound slightly patronising, but I love the fact that the author of LGTUD doesn't text-write, but writes-writes, as in proper-English-writes. Full sentences and appropriate punctuation. Secondly, because her posts are interesting to read. Like the one where one minute she was writing about not being much of a talker when she was younger, then she segued into Twitter and updates, winding up with the tale of a suspiciously looking sixty-year-old man who was walking on his own at 4:30am near her house. Her style might not appeal to people who're not used to words constantly changing fonts and sizes but hey! we're all different. Embrace difference.
There's a downside to virtual neighbourhoods, though. They don't exist. Everytime you click on 'Next blog' a different space appears, thus rendering the notion of a settled community completely meaningless. Also, I cheated a little. I chose the next-door neighbours that would appeal more to my readers. More often than not, I found barren cyber-land where posts had not been updated for aeons, owners who had decamped to greener pastures or blogs whose content was too offensive. Yet, despite these minuses, I loved the experience. At least neither rabbit nor I came across a Queen of Hearts screaming "Off with their heads" at the top of her lungs. Instead, we were both lucky to meet the equivalent of the Mad Hatter's tea party.
Next Post: ‘Killer Opening Song’, to be published on Wednesday 30th March at 11:59pm (GMT)