Vantage point

Monday, May 05, 2003


Exactly one year ago, I had started blogging. Why did I start? I don't know. My friend George had a blog and I would read it once a week or so. As I mentioned it here in my first post, the decision to start blogging was spurred by my acceptance by IIML on that very day. I figured that since I would be away from home for the first time, I would have a lot to tell my family and friends. So instead of sending mails to everyone about how I find my new life, and about what I have been thinking lately, why not start a blog?

So I started this blog. Wrote a post and sent emails to all my friends saying "Yeh apun ka blog, isko visit karo". A few of them did visit it and said nice stuff about what I wrote. I was not able to update it very frequently at first. In fact my first post, though written on 5th may, was published on 6th because I forgot to press the "publish" button. The first post as you see, is mainly political. I was feeling pissed of at Thackeray (no surprises) and vented my irritation on the blog. I remember, this irritation arose from watching his spout his rabid inanities on Vir Sanghvi's Hard Talk Sunday night. I wrote about Pu La, cricket, in a way my first post is representative of all that I wrote in the year that followed. In fact as I read it right now, I noticed so many typos. Even that is representative of my blog. LOL.

For the first few days my blog was purely "friends only", i e only my friends read it. But one fine morning I saw a mail from someone called "Sonal Bhushan". She said she liked my blog a lot (confession - for the first few emails, I thought Sonal was a guy since I knew a guy named Sonal since I was a kid. Come to think of it I even thought Anik was a guy for many days. What is it about these Colorado females. ;-)) and that I should put a comments system in place because she feels like she has a lot to say about what I post. I was so happy that a stranger halfway around the world stumbled on my blog, read it, and liked it enough to actually write me an email. We emailed each other a lot during that time and became great friends. I was very happy when she started a blog as well. Then one day I got a long mail from Suku saying that she found my blog through Sonal's. We started emailing each other as well.

Around this time, I was supposed to leave for Lucknow. Earlier I was not much of an MSN messenger user since we had a dialup line at home. But in IIML, with 24 hour net access, MSN messenger became my lifeline. I used to have long chats with Suku, Sonal, Satyen and Nikita. At times we would have long late-night conferences.

Through the blogs and the chats, we became close friends, as close as real life friends...and we had not even met each other. I had always wondered how online friendships can get close, but I think that if you like someone's blog, your becoming friends is a foregone conclusion. Our blogs reflect our thoughts, our personality and our inner matter how hard we try to hide them. So once you like a person's blog, you are going to like the person as well (unless it is one of those "news link" blogs where people just post links). Little surprise then that when i visited Bombay 3 months later, Suku and I met up and got along like a house on fire. I was supposed to meet Sonal as well in January, but a cold wave combined with some pesky viruses made it impossible for me to leave Lucknow.

Blogging has given me a lot of joy. It has made me a lot of great friends, like Sonal, Suku, Anik, Sarika, the Nikitas, Sameer, Prashant, Onkar, Aditi, Almas and a few others. It has also taught me a lot of fun things about people I knew from my pre-blogging days like George, Ramanand, Satyen, Sumeet, Parvez, Hemya, Shantanu etc.

When I started blogging, I though that my close friends and family, numbering to about 10 or so, will read my blog everyday. So I would have put an estimate of the number of hits in one year as 4000 at the most. Yet, as I check the sitemeter which I put on the blog 2 weeks after I started it, the number of hits until now is 27,480. So other than the people who comment and talk to me, there are many others who just read the blog silently. I get on an average 100 hits a day. It means a lot to me that so many silent readers visit this blog regularly.

Thank you all for coming into my lives, reading my blog, appreciating it, debating on it, telling others about it.

I hope you all will be here when I write my 2nd Blogversary post next year.