Picture above from here
This week The Network has exceeded 550,000 page views.
I find this amazing.
Some of it is due to Andrew Bolt. Thanks Andrew.
Back when Andrew was facing a trial
when he accused some Aboriginal people of
only using their Aboriginality for personal profit and advancement,
he sent his readership to this blog
when it would have been a dicey matter
for him to keep conversing with his readership.
The inference was that I was of the Left.
For Andrew's benefit, I am usually too Left for the Right
and too Right for the Left -
which should place be pretty much in the middle, I reckon.
Perhaps Andrew thought it would teach me a lesson.
The surprise, from my point of view, came for his fan base.
I treated them courteously.
I rejected only one comment - and that was because of bad language.
I advised the writer that English was a flexible language.
I suggested he re-write his comment without the bad language
and there was every likelihood I would print his work.
I didn't hear from him again.
One of Andrew's fans even complimented me.
He said that, even though he did not agree with my politics,
he liked my style - or words to that effect.
Over the years - and in particular in recent months -
the statistics of many blog posts has reached three
and sometimes four figure statistics.
That's quite a lot for me.
So I express my sincere gratitude to those who
have notched up the numbers for The Network.
Many of you don't live in the Great South Land of Oz.
You live in Europe, Asia, and the Americas -
to mention three of the five continents.
Many of you come by other social media.
The wonders of 21st C widespread communication!
The Network emerged from a previous blog, The Eagle's Nest.
So one could say that there was a dry run -
even though it was not planned as such.
The format of The Network has changed
as Blogger has permitted and I have tried different things.
There is one Networker I would like to mention by name.
My friend and comrade-in-arms, Denis Wilson.
Until recent times, Denis maintained a blog -
This year, Denis has followed a journey
which has been spelt out on his Facebook site rather than his blog.
Denis and I met on-line with our blogging ventures -
his were environmental and mine was community and political comment.
The friendship has long since been cemented off-line
even though we live in different states of Australia.
Denis is not the only friend I have made through blogging,
and I am most grateful for those friendships.
I hope there are many more regular readers
that I may be able to meet.
I am at an age and stage where blogging and social media
has become more vital for me.
As of this year, I am having to admit that my days as a
person with a direct role in community organising may be numbered.
I have been involved in community organisations since I was twelve.
I held my first office-bearing position at fifteen.
I have organised with a toddler on my hip
as well as the time decades later when my husband was dying.
I think I am coming to a stage when the only way
I will be able to express fully my concerns
is via social media - particularly via The Network.
The touch-typing fingertips have not given up their task just yet.
One has to be curmudgeonly to find that this season we call Christmas
is just like any other day of the week.
To those who - like me - follow The Christ, I wish you a blessed time.
To my friends in the other Abrahamic faiths, Judaism and Islam,
I wish you blessed times as you celebrate, respectively,
Hannukah and The Prophet's birth day.
I know my friends of other faiths -
I think of Sister Nivedita and Sundrum and his family and Neel and his family -
will also recognise this time as very special.
And I must give a special mention to my beautiful Sikh friends
with whom I have shared many beautiful and constructive times -
including worship at the Gurdwara at Blackburn.
BLESSINGS OF THE SEASON TO ALL -
EVEN YOU ANDREW BOLT