Orkut, the social media pioneer website,took the world by storm and I was no exception. I opened my orkut account in the year 2007, and to my delight, I could find a lot of ex-colleagues, acquaintances and long-lost friends on the site. I hardly get any free time during the day, so I used to log on to orkut only after 11 PM, and I don’t think the session ever lasted more than an hour, even on the most interesting days. But those precious minutes were purely mine. Me, my close held remembrances, my trajectory of thoughts and my super-charged emotional connections. Orkut gave me back a slice of my old life, and I luxuriated in the rhapsody. The best feature was the option of bulk scrap which took away the pain of festive greetings individualy.
But the excitement was short-lived. After a year or so, folks started becoming less frequent in scrapping, the numbers of new photos being uploaded started decreasing and the buzz started approaching the fag end. Orkut was taken over by the internet giant, Google, but the doom’s spell was, I think, already in action. People were already talking feverishly about the new entrant, Facebook. I created my Facebook profile in the early months of 2008 and was stunned by the clean interface and user-friendly features. The privacy standards were top-notched and the browsing experience was unmatched.
It was at the behest of one of my colleagues at my hospital that I spent a couple of hours understanding the nuances of what actually a blog is. The year was 2008. The month was November. As a child I had practiced writing my own diary that chronicled daily events in my own biased version. Little did I know that a lot of people are writing their diaries in the web version for the ordinary man to read, appreciate and be inspired. A blog is a diary in which you can pen down anything you want. It will be updated within seconds and it will remain forever in the realms of internet.
I truly wanted to start sharing my observations , to let people know my edition of life. According to me every life is a story worth telling. The next morning, I signed up on Blogger, the official blog platform of Google. In a matter of minutes, I was all set to write my first blog. I envisioned writing a small piece from my childhood memorabilia but I was not sure about it and instead wrote a rather boring piece detailing about Hysterectomy techniques. It is not everyone’s cup of tea to provide an insightful narration about one’s own life, and I certainly was not fitting the bill at that time.
From 2008 to early 2011, I spent long hours going through diverse blogs, reading the text between the lines as well. The experience was truly an enriching one, even soul-stirring at times. In February 2011, I finally mustered the courage to start my blog actively and was pleasantly surprised to get such a good response from the blog followers.
The next thing I wanted to learn was effective blog dissemination in order to reach more people. Google has always given me exemplary companionship and this time also it came to my rescue. I made myself familiar with some of the basic blog dissemination tools i.e. linking Blogger with Facebook and Twitter, submitting posts to Stumbleupon, Reddit, Digg etc. creating shortened URLs and filling in the right keywords in the label column of Blogger. In a week I had written 7 posts and guess what, people started taking notice. Soon search engines also started directing visitors to my blog and I started getting admiring mails from every corner of the world. Even my daughter who was in the US at the time called up to congratulate me for this feat. My wife and my son also appreciated the new found love of my life, and the sheen was clearly visible in their eyes.
Days passed. Weeks passed. Soon my blog crossed the thousand visitors mark. I wrote about a lot of serendipitous things – life, mind, soul, relativity, nature, relationships, ordinary events, mornings, nights, moods, flavours etc. The more I wrote, the more I started knowing myself. As I explored deeper I could see the newly found layers which enveloped certain truths that were so inconspicuous to me. As time passed, blogging became a tool for self-discovery, for a never ending voyage in the lanes of my own soul.
Blogging has been very popular in the western countries, but in India, you will not find a lot of bloggers with medical background. This fact was pointed out to me by one of my patients, an avid blogger himself. I genuinely wish that more and more people start writing about their own versions of life and soon we would be able to create an ocean of knowledge, the real and practical one.