In the early days of blogging in Europe, I kept my own weblog on digital developments. I deleted my old blog, but kept the second blog I started on my personal name, Polle de Maagt. My oldest post there is from January 2006. And for quite a while I kept a steady frequency for blogging. But over the years, while working on digital projects, while having kids, I lost my blogging routine and blogging appetite. And then, I started blogging again.

Sorry, this blog is for me …

I had been keeping notes of my travels in my Evernote for a while. My packing lists, my Japan trip, my favorite city trip tips (I would keep separate notes about cities like Amsterdam, Gent, New York, Prague and would share them with people who would ask for them), my notes about Amalfi, about our Peak district adventure near Manchester.

But also my notes about less tangible things. About how traveling without expectations makes nicer experiences. How letting the waiter choose your food, makes more memorable experiences. About how closing your eyes makes memories more memorable. About the small things we do to surprise our kids – our bowl of surprises and father-daughter-day to name a few.

And the more I was updating my different packing lists, the more I was preparing my hikes, the more I was refining my notes on omakase and every single time I shared my Gent tips with someone I realized that it made way more sense to share my notes openly. Rather than keeping these for myself in Evernote of another tool, it made total sense to share these notes with the world.

And so that is pretty much what this is. The notes on business travel, traveling with kids, my thought on loyalty programs, great hotels I would normally store in my Evernote and share with select friends, published out in the open. I literally use the packing lists I publish on my blog to pack my gear for my next hike – I tweak, check, doublecheck before finally checking in my luggage to leave for another adventure. My planning and preparation posts (like the ones for Torres del Paine and Annapurna) literally reflect the phase where I’m in while planning my next hikes or events.

So, why I started blogging? Above all, this blog is for me, sorry.

… but I massively appreciate it if you appreciate it.

When I recently checked out at one of my favorite hotels, the front desk employee stopped me “Ah, Mister de Maagt, I really appreciated reading your blog. I have traveled a lot myself and really liked the way you write” – it was the  start of a really nice and long conversation on his experience traveling the world, his dreams and his concrete plans to quit his job and start traveling again. These are the moment that give me energy for months.

In the same week, a colleague told me he had appreciated my review of the QO hotel in Amsterdam.

And by chance, another person benefited from my Athens tips.

That makes blogging really fulfilling. On top of my super ego-centric motives (to just keep my notes in a place that is easily accessible and adaptable), other people actually use my thoughts, notes and ideas.

So feel free to comment, share your ideas or contact me. That is why I started blogging. This blog is for me first, but I really love it when you appreciate it as well.

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