Return.

It’s been a long time since I wrote in this blog. Although I had every intention to continue writing up our travels, like many good intentions, they became waylaid. Soon after we returned from Central Asia, we lost a large chunk of my travel photos. Our external hard drive had a mechanical failure, which in retrospect isn’t surprising when I think about the amount of impact it must have endured on the bumpy journey through Tajikistan on the Pamir Highway (we now use a rugged hard drive when traveling). Unfortunately, I hadn’t yet backed the photos up onto my computer at home. It was a rookie mistake – I’d been shooting in RAW and I just didn’t have the space to transfer them all, so I’d had this idea that I’d only transfer a selection of them, after editing the ones I wanted to keep. The hard drive died before I had the chance to transfer any. We took it to a specialist who quoted us approximately $800 to retrieve the images, but at the time we just couldn’t afford it. We can now, a year later, but I’m trying not to get my hopes up: a lot can change in a year, and the hard drive may have degraded further.

Admittedly, I could have kept on blogging. I lost my photos from Turkey and Uzbekistan, but still had the photos I took in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. I could have continued without photos, but part of me feels like I used the loss of the photos as an excuse for my laziness and procrastination. The truth is, as much as I love writing and as much as I desperately want to keep a written record of our travels because of my unbelievably poor memory, it takes a lot out of me. Even now, as I warm up to start blogging our latest adventure in Sumatra, I’m asking myself why I would choose to write in my free time, when I have so little free time and most hours in my day are consumed with trying to write a 100 000 word thesis. I don’t know. Maybe it’s to prove something to myself. Maybe it’s because I’m worried I’ll just lie awake at night thinking about Serial and worrying about my thesis if I don’t find something else to occupy my mind. Maybe it’s because writing this thesis has reawakened my love of writing more generally. I don’t know.

I hope to write a few posts over the Christmas and New Year period, seeing as how the weather has spoilt our camping plans. Keep an eye out for them, if you so desire 🙂

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