Sunday Night Thoughts #2

Ordinary Nomad has now been in existence for almost a month. The first week it got 14 views, the second week 11, the third week 220, and this week 310. Where’s Wetzler, my old site, no longer exists. Well, that’s actually a bit misleading. It’s backed up somewhere, but it’s not accessible anymore. You can’t go to the page and read old Where’s Wetzler content. You are forced to become a fan of Ordinary Nomad.

I would say my goal for this next week is to eclipse 400 views, but unless I write something that is of New York Times quality and it gets shared in many different outlets, I don’t see that happening. The reason last week got quite a few views was because the Airbnb post did pretty well. I think my sister shared it. My sister probably has about 16 times as many friends as I do on Facebook. I’m not surprised that post did better than the other posts, since worked on it a couple times throughout the weekend and thus didn’t rush it and also did several revisions. That post made me realize that short, quick attacks while writing, and then long periods where you just leave it, followed by another short, quick attack or a revision, can be the best way to write articles. I doubt it’s the way to write novels. Writing a novel is like writing an ultra marathon. If you walked and then sprinted and then walked and then sprinted, the guys and gals keeping a steady pace would overtake you. But when writing a short article, spastic attacks can be the way to go.

Other stats about the site so far:

  • Only one person has commented (two if you count my reply)
  • Two people have donated (including a more than generous $20 donation from Peter Leslie) (two others donated but since I don’t have PayPal Pro I can’t accept recurring donations which means the only place to make a recurring donation is on Patreon, where I currently have one Patron, a woman I don’t even know!)
  • I’m now on my third WordPress theme. First it was Sight, then Hitmag, and now it’s one called Writee. I still think it looks hideous. I have no idea how to customize WordPress themes. I can’t find good information about it online. I can’t even figure out how to change the site title (where it says, “Ordinary Nomad”) font.
  • I had Maruchan spicy chicken Cup o’ Noodles for dinner tonight.
  • My rent is currently 170 pesos (just over $9USD) per night. I hope to get that down to about $5 or $6USD.
  •  I’m up to 12 knee push ups on my once broken wrist.

But enough about all that. The highlight of today, by far, was taking a walk.

Usually when I leave my house I take a left on the street pictured at the beginning of this post. I don’t know what this street’s called. It’s ugly. Or at least I used to think it was ugly. Tonight it looked kind of beautiful. But even more beautiful has been to witness how this street’s meaning for me has changed in the last week. When I first got here it was just an ugly street with dirt sidewalks and trash and pieces of broken glass on the ground. But now it signifies home, now it signifies that in just a few minutes I’ll be in a cool courtyard, sipping a glass of water, aimlessly surfing on my phone, relaxing.

But today I didn’t take a left. I took a right and headed toward the centro. I’ve been reluctant to go to the centro, because my few brushes with it have left me with the impression that it’s chaotic, dirty, and loud. I don’t like the downtown of any city except maybe Bainbridge Island, and even that’s a little too chaotic for me sometimes. But today I had the idea that I needed to “expand my horizons.”

I was quickly rewarded. After only a few minutes of walking I got to the plaza pictured just above. What a wonderful plaza. Pigeons, people sitting on benches, flanked by restaurants with people enjoying Sunday afternoon meals. It was quiet. And then I headed north a bit and go to another park with some kind of cathedral. Downtown Guadalajara is where you really feel the Spanish influence. The further you go west the more you feel like you’re in Los Angeles, but the further you go east the more you feel like you’re in Spain (albeit a slightly dingy neighborhood in Madrid save for a few nice plazas, churches, and pedestrian streets).

I ended my walk back in familiar territory, by the Parque de la revolucion. And I was happy to be home again, happy to walk down the street that I used to think was dingy, but in a week has been transformed into something else altogether.