We thought that after all this time, we are over half way through our journey, we would give you an insight into our blog, how we put it together and some trivia about it. Our early followers may already have seen some of this information previously.
This blog started being developed as a wordpress.com site approximately 12 months ago by Anne. The advantage of wordpress.com, as opposed to the .org version, is that we do not have to find a site to host the software and administer it ourselves. It does however have less flexibility and cannot use WordPress addins which provide extra blog functionality, but since we wanted to focus on content and our travelling locations potentiality made administration more difficult, the packaged option made more sense. This has been borne out by our experience.
The logo was designed by Anne to reflect the two bikes by colour and our names in the s’s, the larger brown line represents the start of the trip out through Russia, back on part of the silk route and then across Iran and India.
Facts as at date of writing:
Blog Entries: 143
Average blog development time to write,
upload and annotate photographs: 4 to 6 hours
Blog date: relates to when we were there
Estimated words written: over 100,000
Number of signed up followers: 100
Casual followers, not signed up unknown
Continents with regular followers: 6
Countries we have been viewed from: 98
Countries with most views: UK, Australia, USA, Iceland
Comments (not by us): over 800
Total views to date: 36,500 approx.
Most views in a day: 1021, looked at every photo?
Development tools: iPads using Pages & visual apps
Camera: Panasonic Lumix FT5
Video: GoPro 3+ Black @ 1080p 30fps
We realise that we have spent almost one month working on the blog 24 hours a day, but if we had not done this work we would have thousands of unannotated pictures and a fuzzy memory of what we did where and when. I think it has been time well spent, plus otherwise we would have had another month of memories to catalog or forget when we finally finished this journey!
Who writes the blog entry is not pre determined. We both may take notes independently, but one of us feels more like writing the entry. We can each do two or three blog entries in a row. We add our names to help identify who the author was, although our regular followers are usually able to identify that from the first few sentences. I take and edit the video using imovie, pretty simple really. Anne takes the photos, mostly as she rides, so anything that you may think is slightly blurry was taken at 100 kph with one gloved hand through a helmet, sometimes backwards while riding a motorbike. Anne then has to download to the iPad, upload a selection to the blog media library and annotate the photos for the blog. Pretty impressive!
In addition to the normal blog entires, from time to time we also update the borders / visas and equipment tabs. Worth a look if you are planning a trip yourself. I should also mention at this point, that there are many other fine motorcycle and other travel blogs out there. Each, while recording that person’s journey, can contain much valuable information and insightful views that could help anyone with their own travel planning. I have found blogs where the writer has taken time and effort to document road conditions, or places to stay, where to visit, the people etc. They each provide an insight into both the travel and the traveller which I find quite fascinating. We are all travelling and recording what we experience but projecting our thoughts and views through our own prism on life which means we each attract different types of readers and hopefully they enjoy the trip with us as much as we do.
While the statistics have shown views from 98 countries many of those are single views probably found by google search or similar. Some countries do keep coming back on a regular basis where we cannot identify the casual follower as family, friend or someone we met on the road. The country that first comes to mind is Brazil. We have regular views from Brazil but no idea who that person or persons are. Will we ever know?
We still enjoy developing content for the 2slowspeeds.com blog and really look forward to your comments, so if you have a question, thought or further information you would like, as they say “do not hesitate to contact us”. Please do comment as it adds to the value of blog in our view and remind us of details we omitted to include. We do aim to respond to each one within a day or so, internet access permitting.
When our RTW travel and retirement chapter finally closes towards the end of 2015, we plan to take the material and develop an ebook to sell to all our loyal followers at a price similar to the recently released gold apple watch. Wish us luck on that one as we have no idea how to do that but it will be an interesting experience.