What even is a blog?

 

When you sit down at a computer for the first time to start putting thoughts onto a page, making those initial comments that turn in to a ‘’multi-award winning commentary on life’’, a blank page is pretty intimidating and also very very blank.

> insert very very BLANK page here <

How do I write? And what about? I haven’t written anything since school. And honestly there are so many people out there trying to do the same thing who will even read it? If Im honest with you and me but mainly to the four blank walls around me, does it matter if someone reads it? Isn’t the entire point to do something that you wouldn’t normally do, a sojourn outside of the comfort zone – what a silly expression to use, who even says ‘’sojourn’’? So here we go, a random stream of consciousness from a rather socially awkward engineer….

The logical place to start would be with the plan and why the sudden, well somewhat, urge to sit down in front of the ‘’very very blank’’ page in the first place and it all comes down to one word.

African sunset with escap+aid

AFRICA.

The stereotypical love affair that every Englishman has in their life. Dreaming of evenings looking over the African wilderness, with a beer in one hand and a lovely lady in the other as the sun set over that blood red soil. And for a short time back in 2013 I had exactly that, minus the lady. The lady makes it too perfect, life’s not that easy! For a short time I found myself working on a game reserve in South Africa, experiencing a somewhat sheltered version of Africa I must admit but it was quite spectacular. After that I made my way up to a school in the shadow of Mt. Kenya, Enaikishomi Primary School, set up by some amazing people back home in the UK, it later turned out that I was the first person that they had ever sent there to help.

I experienced kindness in a way that I had never done before, I know it’s a cliché that people with nothing give everything but here that was exactly what happened, I had experienced true Africa; corruption, love and massive elephants that run through school fences. Since the moment I arrived back home all those years ago, I have been waiting, planning and hoping that I would get to go back.

“Im not writing a travel blog, promise”

I think at this point as much as its looking like it, this is not a travel blog about Africa, sort of. Its a stream of my thoughts and feeling about the world that I work, live and Love in.  Africa just acts as a rather good starting point for the journey that me, you and the four blank walls are going to go on.

So why start all this? Why not just run away into the wilderness and not look back? Well that is the question, maybe its a calling from a higher power or it just feels kind of right. I have is an urge to tell my story through a somewhat badly punctuated, poorly spelt narrative.

And I suppose it will be nice for my family to see that I’m alive whilst I’m not in the UK. Yes I am from the UK.

In some parts of my life I may be just a little obsessive, so to set things out in a slightly more ordered fashion I have written a list, yes sometimes I like lists. Something to show where I’m heading with all of this, as of right now I have no idea where it will end but here are a few things to do on the way:

  • Never be in your comfort zone, it dull. Just don’t do it.
  • Start a business.
  • Make someone’s life better because you were in it.
  • Explore the world the slow way.
  • Use every opportunity to learn new skills.
  • Write a blog telling everyone the plan, share experiences don’t keep them to yourself.
  • Never stop smiling.
  • Create a plan that enables you to do all of this and still be happy.

Not much right!? I know that its slightly ridiculous to have ‘create a plan’ in the plan but hey, who is actually going to read this! It seems to me that those four blank walls are becoming less blank…

END. Or is it?

Its now 6 months after I wrote the above. I now know that writing a list was a terrible idea, silly 6 months earlier Ben. But I have managed to achieve some of it and it all centres around ESCAP+AID – A company that will hopefully change lives, enable me to learn new skills etc. Well it kinda ticks all those boxes on the list. If you’re actually reading this you will be on my website and by now you will have an idea of the picture that I could not see back then.

 

Its interesting looking back and seeing the journey that I have come on and I suppose I want you to know too. Or maybe I just needed content….