The journal or the blog

travel journalsI started this blog partly to post my travel experiences live from Europe. Now that we leave in three days and I see the stuff we’re taking strewn about the study (fall clothes just take up so much more space than summer things) I absolutely am not going to lug the laptop around. Besides, I fear blogging would replace journaling and I have to force myself to even squeeze journal time in. And reading my blog later – I think – will never recapture the magic of travel like reading my journals – seeing the writing sprawl untidily across the page on the days I was tired, the shaky writing from train journeys, the hastily scribbled half-thoughts meant to later evoke the sights, sounds and feelings. And the journals are for me. Nobody else reads them and it’s different writing for an audience of me than for the world at large (or at least those 50-odd people on average popping into my blog every day. Who *are* you anyway?)

It’s tempting to go ahead and get all my experiences into type – I’m terrible about transferring experiences from my memory and journal to the trip report on my Web site. I returned from Italy in March and am only through day three of the trip in my online write-up. But in the end, I want another journal, number eight, to stand with my first seven trip journals on my nightstand. I want to pick it up a year or ten from now and randomly turn to a page to surprise myself with a memory I’d lost. I love the photos, the scrapbook items (tickets, maps etc) and the terrible home videos. But nothing returns me to a magical point in my history like my own handwritten word.


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