What this is

I’ve been thinking a lot this week about what I’m doing here, and what it means to be a blogger. Blogger. The name still cracks me up.

I am a writer and, thanks to this wonderful 21st century medium, I am able to share my thoughts with others in the form of a blog. There’s no pay and infrequent feedback, but even if it’s just me, clicking away on the keyboard and occasionally chuckling at something I think is funny, it’s a place to share my stories and thoughts.

When I named this site, my intent was to write primarily about European travel, since I love it so much. However, since I don’t have the time, nor even close to enough money, to travel to Europe as frequently as I’d like, I’ve come to realize that I need to be a little more flexible in my subject matter. After all, even my hero Rick Steves has branched out to report on his travels to the Middle East!

Man does not live by trips to Europe alone. (Although, I could. I really could.)

Plus, The Boys hate it when I leave. I rescued Mick about two and half years ago and Richie a year after that, so now I have to add the cost of dog sitting when calculating my travel budget. An added expense, but they are so worth it. Meet my sweet pups:

My boys:  Mick Jagger,the long haired, rock star dachshund, and his brother from another mother, Little Richard

The Boys: Mick Jagger,the long haired, rock star dachshund, and his brother from another mother, Little Richard

So 2014 will be the first year I haven’t gone to Europe since my son Chris graduated from college in 2005. That October I went with my cousin Carole and friend Carol (I kept thinking of Darryl, Darryl and my other brother, Darryl, from the Bob Newhart show – remember?) on the fabulous 17-day Rick Steves Tour of Italy. I’ve been kind of bummed about not heading to Europe this year, but . . .

Looking out over Verona, nine years ago today - October 3, 2005!

Looking out over Verona, nine years ago today – October 3, 2005!

But . . . I will be going to Florida on business next month and have decided to rent a car and spend a few days exploring Savannah, GA (just a four hour drive from Orlando) and St. Augustine, FL. I’ve been to Savannah and loved it and can’t wait to see more. And I’ve always wanted to visit St. Augustine. This will be my vacation for the year and I can’t wait to share my adventures with you when I get back!

One of Savannah's iconic squares

One of Savannah’s iconic squares

Whether any travel destination is new or exotic, near or far, depends completely on where you’re starting. (Did I just hear you say, “duh?” Fine. You’re right.) Coming from Ohio, traveling to Georgia and Florida is a relatively short, domestic trip. But if you’re reading this and live in, say, Brazil, this is a BIG ASS foreign trip that requires multiple long flights and some serious vacation time away from the job. It’s all relative.

And visiting interesting places, whether in the next little town or halfway across the world, offers an opportunity to reflect and share. What more can a writer wish for?

Actually . . . another thing writers wish for is that people will read what they’re writing and enjoy it. Most of the time when you’re blogging, you just kind of throw it out there and hope for the best. Sometimes my mother or a friend will comment and I so appreciate that. Encouragement is good for the soul!

And every once in a blue moon, a stranger will comment and that just blows me away. Yesterday a lady named Christel wrote something nice about last week’s post and that was just the boost I needed to plant myself back in front of the screen today and write this week’s post. Thank you, Christel! You made my day!

So here’s what this is:

I’m going to keep writing about places I visit, near and far, since my near may be your far, and so on and so forth. Sometimes I’m going to write about books and other travel stories that I think are fascinating and fun and that I want to share with you. And sometimes I’ll write about travel-related topics. Having just introduced you to The Boys, I’m thinking some folks might be interested in how I prepare the dog/house sitter to take care of everything while I’m away. Maybe a check list of what they should know?

And that’s it for today. If you’re reading this, thank you. If you want to share my blog with others who might enjoy it, I’d be grateful. And as you’ve already gathered, you know I’d be thrilled to hear from you!

Have a wonderful weekend and may all your travels be fascinating, whether you’re heading across town or across the sea.

About katemahar

Freelance writer and event planner by trade . . . mother/daughter/sister/friend . . . passionate traveler . . . compulsive reader
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9 Responses to What this is

  1. Love, love, love your writing, Kate! I have never been to Florida, so please let me live vicariously through you…..Savannah is also on my list. I have a sister in Atlanta but have never been there either. Keep doing what you do, because you do it so well! Maybe someday we can meet in the middle where both of our fars won’t be so…. far! I miss you!

  2. Margaret says:

    Sounds great; keep it going, Kate.

  3. Debby Baird says:

    I’m often dumbfounded when I hear of people who never even explore the wonders near to them. We have Stan Hewitt Hall in Akron which is beautiful in architecture, decor, and grounds, but 3/4 of people I know have never gone through it. They even have special events like Ohio Mart which features Ohio made products. Our madrigals used to sing there every year. These are the kinds of things which travelers find, but locals ignore. Why??

    • katemahar says:

      Great point, Debby! Grass always greener? A few years ago my friend Carol and I decided to spend a sunny Saturday afternoon visiting the gardens at Stan Hewitt Hall (gorgeous!) and the Akron Museum of Art -an absolute gem in the shadow of its big sister museum in Cleveland. As I have made clear, I love, love, LOVE Europe. I love the history and architecture and culture. But there is also so much to explore and appreciate right here in Northeastern Ohio, right here in the Midwest, right here in America . . . RIGHT HERE! I’m open to suggestions. Not only would it be fun to meet you to visit someplace new (to me) in your neck of the woods, but I love the idea of guest writers on my blog. Let me know if there’s something you’d enjoy writing about!

      • Debby Baird says:

        I’m more of a reader and editor than a writer. I tend to Steven King it and meander for way too long!! I digress–see– I’d love to explore with you. I’ve been thinking about the First Ladies’ Museum and McKinley stuff in Canton.

  4. katemahar says:

    Debby, I would LOVE to go to the First Ladies Museum! Let’s make a date!

  5. YS says:

    Hey mom, just read the last few posts and loved them! I’m glad you’re broadening your topics- hell a trip to Arby’s could be a good post if something funny happens! I think I’ve fixed the issue with the notifications and your posts will come to my inbox. Can’t wait to read every week- love you!!!! YS

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