Back in November of last year I decided to start a blog. It's not as if I had been contemplating the notion over a long period of time, on the contrary, the thought came into my mind one day as I was loading the dishwasher and right there and then it was a done deal. I'm not one to waste precious time when a light bulb moment occurs thus the very next day I called a guy called Jamie Clocherty, a local lad and fellow Scot whom I had bumped into a few months previous at a local business gathering in Brackley. He was there promoting his graphic design and website company and from the sample material on show I knew this guy a) had some serious skillz and b) was the man to bring the Ginger Warrior to life! I only had one request of Jamie: "Make me a cartoon".
On January 26th I sat down to write my very first blog post, this post. There was nothing overly profound contained therein, nothing that would set the world on fire and yet I felt such a sense of accomplishment when I hit publish for the first time! Because here's the thing, Warriors: I do not consider myself to be a writer in any sense of the word. It doesn't come naturally to me and sometimes I will sit for hours stewing over a paragraph or even a simple sentence until I could scream out to the Blogging Gods in anguish and frustration - "why hast thou forsaken me?" I have come so close to throwing in the proverbial towel on numerous occasions. You've all seen the tantrums and tears in this post and in this one. I don't hold anything back from my Warriors, neither the good, the bad nor the downright ugly.
So this begs the very question as to why I am doing this, why have I chosen to abandon a perfectly successful, familiar and financially stable career in teaching for the potentially unsuccessful, unfamiliar and financially unstable career of full-time blogging? It's pretty simple really.
Because I'd much rather spend my time with you.
Over the past six months our little band of World Wide Warriors has grown steadily and continues to thrive. I love our daily interactions on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest (that one's a work in progress for me!) and here on our little blog. You have shown me nothing but support, encouragement and kindness and in those moments when I did come close to throwing in the aforementioned proverbial towel it was YOU that kept me going. That may sound overly dramatic but it's also the gospel truth.
I know many of you on a personal basis, our paths having crossed in some way at some point. Perhaps we grew up together, maybe we were work colleagues or it could be that our shared love for travelling the world brought us together in a distant land. However we met, thanks for sticking with me as I navigate my way (clumsily) through the blogosphere. If you're family, you have no choice. You're in it for the long haul.
There are now hundreds, dare I say it, thousands of you now who I have yet to meet in person and chances are we never will. To you can I say, first of a all, a huge and heartfelt thank you. Thank you for reading the ramblings of a ginger lunatic and then being so kind to tell me that you enjoy what I write or the videos that I make and that they bring a smile to your face and brighten your day. That is exactly why I'm doing what I'm doing. But there is a little bit more to it than that for I have a vision, a somewhat grandiose vision, perhaps but I firmly adhere to the belief that we can achieve whatever we put our minds to, however seemingly lofty our goals.
And my vision is this: I want us, you and me, to be a force for good in this world, to be known in our communities for our kindness, service and integrity. I want us to be able to declare "'I'm a World Wide Warrior!" and for that to mean something. And this is how our vision will begin to take shape:
Saturday 25th October is going to be our very first WWWAD, our
WORLD WIDE WARRIOR ACTION DAY!
Doesn't that sound exciting?? And it is, it really is! Exciting and yet oh so very simple.
I'm asking each of you to perform an act of service in your community. What that act of service will be is entirely up to you. Here in Brackley I plan on organising a mass bake sale in the local town hall and the proceeds will be split between the four local primary school but the important thing to remember is that it doesn't have to be anything time consuming and grand, the smallest act of service or gesture of kindness can make the biggest of differences. For example, do you have an elderly neighbour who is need of some company for an hour of two? Could you bake a cake and surprise a friend? Perhaps you could you offer to babysit for a friend who is in desperate need of a break? The possibilities are endless! What do you think, Warriors? Is this something you'd be willing to do? Can we make a huge success of our very first WWWAD and bless the members of our local communities in doing so?? I have such a good feeling about this and just know you will rally to the cause! Then all you need to do is email me to let me know what you did (with some pictures if you're willing) and I will put together a beautiful blog post highlighting the collective kindness of my World Wide Warriors.
Happy half year anniversary, Warriors. Here's to the next six months and to infinity and beyond!