Josna Rege

Travelling Light: A-to-Z April Challenge Theme

In Notes on March 21, 2014 at 3:27 pm

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775c-1 Last year I dragooned Tell Me Another readers into the A-to-Z April Challenge and wrote a blog post every day of the month, following the alphabet. But last year I signed up literally at the eleventh hour and chose my daily topics on the spur of the moment as well. This year I’m in a different predicament. I’ve signed up ten days earlier than I did in 2013, but expect to be traveling abroad throughout the month of April. The time I will have on the computer ought to be spent either on my sabbatical writing or video-chatting with my dear parents, whom I will be leaving at home with trepidation. I’m told that it’s a good idea to decide on a theme in advance rather than just blogging randomly as I did last year; but will I have the time to do this at all? A-to-Z-Challenge-theme-reveal After some thought I’ve decided that since I plan to visit a postcolonial and transcultural studies institute in Germany, a country I hardly know at all, and then to travel in England, the country of my birth, I’ll name my theme “Traveling Light,” reflections on culture and place from a non-national perspective. That should give me a lot of latitude either to discuss a particular postcolonial or transcultural topic or simply to make observations about anything that catches my eye (accompanied by photographs where possible). Let’s see how I get on! I’m determined not to let blogging interfere with my sabbatical or spoil my enjoyment of people and places in the moment, so if I find that it is doing so, I’ll simply stop posting. Still, it’s bound to be fun, and if I do manage to finish the challenge it’ll be an added bonus. Click here if you want to sign up for the A-to-Z challenge or browse the entries to date and here if you want to check out the other themes people have chosen so far. Come travel light with me! Tell Me Another (Contents to Date) Chronological Table of Contents

  1. […] Travelling Light: A-to-Z April Challenge Theme in which I introduce my theme […]

  2. All the best! While I don’t want blogging to interfere with your travels and research, I do hope you’ll share your experiences here.

    • Thank you, bottledworder. I did complete the Challenge and it definitely intruded a little into the month, but I guess I must “own” that (as they say in America)–I chose to do it, for better or worse. It was uneven, and turned out to be a different kind of writing from what I’d got used to turning out; no doubt that’s a good thing. Somehow I’m not at all sure what’s next. You are always thinking as you continue to write, and inviting others in to think with you. I very much admire that in your blog.

  3. You’ll do well– all the best for the challenge!

    • Thank you very much, Damyanti. You were the person who first told me about the Challenge and encouraged me to participate in the 2013 one. This has been my second year doing it and I’m always amazed at the amount of work you and the other organizers do, while participating in the Challenge yourselves, too. I apologize for having taken more than a month to reply–embarrassing. But then I read your recent post in which you confessed to doing the same–however, while visiting and commenting on about 60 other blogs every day! Wow! I can’t say I’ve come close, but there were about half a dozen that I visited and commented on regularly, another 6-10 that I visited from time to time, and another 15-20 that I visited only once or twice. Out of them all, I think I’ve found a handful that I feel sure I will continue to visit regularly, and they me. Thanks again–you are amazing!

  4. Look forward to the travel blog. Good luck and I do hope you complete the challenge.

    • Thanks, Deepa, and I am sorry for this month-long delay in responding. I was on the move throughout the month and though I did manage to complete the Challenge, I am woefully behind in responding to comments. Love your food blog and look forward to returning in the future.

  5. Hi Josna,

    I’ve just spent some more time “with you” on your blog. I so dearly love coming here for story time; your writing style is so personable that I feel like you’re sharing your stories with me over tea. I always leave this space feeling calmed, in some way, and with a broader perspective. I deeply appreciate your work.


    • Here it is five weeks later and I’m only just replying to you, Morgan–so sorry. When you sent this sweet message I was in the throes of packing and last-minute details. But my not replying didn’t mean to suggest a lack of appreciation for your kind words–far from it; I couldn’t hope for a better response to Tell Me Another. Hope Spring has returned where you are; I got back to my part of the US to find it only just beginning, in May! A little disconcerting, but at least I didn’t miss everything. Thanks so much and welcome back anytime! J

  6. Superb theme! I am surely going to enjoy all the light travel trivia here!

    • Thank you, Aditi! I hope I can make my posts enjoyable. I didn’t explain my idea as well as I could have, but I don’t plan to share light travel trivia, but rather, reflections and observations on culture as I travel. The “light” part refers to traveling without too much baggage, metaphorically speaking—without burdening myself with too many assumptions and prejudices from one culture as I travel through others. Not sure at all what that might look like!
      I’ve just visited your blog and love “My Treasure Chest” as well as your theme for the A-to-Z Challenge. Wow–26 pieces of flash fiction—now that’s ambitious! Good idea to use a color as a starting point. All the best, have fun, and I hope we meet again over the course of the month.

  7. Marvellous! Oh but it could be just Marv or Ellous and we’d all be happy. Or it could be Not At All, if that’s what it takes to accomplish your mission. And then *Bonus* we’ll get to hear an even greater tale of achievement. Godspeed!

    • Thank you! I very much appreciate that you give me permission to post or not to post—and even consider the possibility that not-posting might offer an added bonus. I look forward to visiting The Essence of a Thing during the Challenge, and think your choice of theme is an inspired one. Have fun and see you again in April!

  8. I like the theme! Should be a fascinating insight into a different country and culture!

    • I hope so. Just knowing that I’m doing the Challenge may make me a little more alert to the cross/trans/cultural differences and similarities. I like your theme as well—LIVING Life—and will definitely be visiting again over the course of the month. I also like the book review site you contribute to–you are active out there! Have fun, and thank you for commenting.

  9. It is hard to be on the road and blog daily, but “Traveling Light” doesn’t have to be a very long post! Take the “Light” part and “Travel” with it! Enjoy April. I’ll be A to Z- ing, too!

    • Thank you for the encouragement and good advice, Donna. I’ll think Light. Happy A-to-Z’ing and I look forward to visiting. J

  10. I think I shall enjoy travelling with you in this challenge. I hope you have an enjoyable sabbatical and this it will be all you wish it to be. Good luck with it all.

    • Thank you, Keith, for your good wishes. I’m going to take a leaf out of your book and think of these posts as part of a larger project. But I also hope to keep some spontaneity and see what springs to mind at the time. I’ll be treading new ground, and hope my April posts will reflect that. Inspired by your blog. All the best to you, too, and I look forward to visiting again over the next month.

  11. Sounds marvellous. Look forward to travelling with you Josna. 🙂

    • You’ll be my model, Don, if I can take photos and allow them to do some of the work for me. I’m going to try to keep the posts brief, since that is the only way I can hope to keep up with daily posting during this already-busy month. (But my camera’s memory card has chosen this moment to malfunction; have to add another item to my to-do-before-leaving list!) All by best, J

  12. Fascinating! I have traveled a little so I am very much looking forward to your thoughts and images! 🙂

    • What fun! After continual uprooting and moving in my youth, I’ve become rather sedentary these past few years, so I’m curious to see what it’s going to be like. Your interest is giving me energy already—a willingness to take a more unsettled perspective for a while.

  13. I understand your feelings about leaving your parents at home. Enjoy your travels as well as you can. I will follow along through the internet as you enjoy your sabbatical.

    Paula at /Smidgen,Snippets,&Bits

  14. This sounds like a theme I will really enjoy. I hope you can keep up with it, I’m sure you can if you do as you describe and use photos! It’s been a year since I met you on the last A-Z challenge. Sounds like aside from the challenge you will be having a full month full of possibilities.

    • Thank you for your good wishes, Kristin. I am hoping very much that it will be a time of possibility, though am not ready for the trip at all yet and quite unsure about whether or not I will be able to keep up with a blog challenge as well, but good idea to use a photo when I have not time for anything else! For the first half of the month (the sabbatical research part) I am scheduled to go to Germany and for the second half, to England (where, if all goes well, I will do some work, but mostly visit family and old friends). India is next (in June-July), if this trip works out! Looking forward to reading your postcard posts and to writing mine. Perhaps it will help me keep them short if I think of them as postcards too.

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