I guess this counts as the “relaunch” of my blog. There are plenty of very good reasons to delete one blog and start another (see: I got tired of 50 people a day coming to my site just to read about halal slaughter; I wanted a blog that wasn’t so explicitly linked to my being in Macedonia, so that my future travels can be written about here; I want to be able to write about my American adventures too, someday, like, “Ellen Working in a Coffeeshop”) but the big one is that it finally, after a year and a half, occurred to me that I wasn’t doing a very good job of respecting my host family’s privacy.
To an American it doesn’t seem all that weird to write about someone you see every day, or to sometimes post pictures of them. If there is one thing I have learned since joining the Peace Corps, though, it’s that I am Not in America Anymore, and these American standards of privacy kind of fail when faced with a family that doesn’t want to uncover photos of themselves on google image search.
I will probably pull some of my old entries over here, but since this is a time-consuming exercise involving actually rereading all the posts to see which ones are “okay” by my new standards of blogging, and then to edit out names and identifying details such as a giant photo of the person in question, it may be a while. Most of you reading this now are probably family/friends/Peace Corps staff members (hi!) and therefore already familiar with my life and host family; so to tell you, from now on I’ll be referring to my family members just by their first initails so as to better protect their privacy. I’ll still be taking photos and keeping them around on facebook and email, but they probably won’t be appearing on my blog as often.
This is kind of vague, but suffice it to say when I realized that everyone – not just my mom or dad or friends from college – could come to my blog and see, say, photos of my little sister playing Donkey Kong, I felt awful. It’s kind of weird to delete a blog and then nearly immediately start it up again at a different address, but that seemed to me the fastest way of erasing the offending posts and images from google’s cache.
Things are going to be getting pretty busy in Debar soon (after-school clubs, begging students to participate in a national essay contest, working on the library grant we just won), but right now I am going to take advantage of my freedom to watch Gilmore Girls…