Archive for the ‘Blogging’ Category

One last look back…


I have spent the last week (in between toddler wrangling, domestic chores and sweating attractively due to the ghastliness of a humid summer) reading all that I have posted since this blog began in March 2010.

And as Status Viatoris was created, in part, to document my experiences on moving to Italy, this nostalgic little journey was made even more interesting by the fact that I am now beginning my preparations to leave.

Having weeded out those posts that in retrospect only existed to fill writers’ block-induced lapses in content, I am still left with almost 300 accounts of this and that. Not a massive amount for a blog over six years old, but certainly enough to keep the memories alive.

So in honour of these last six plus years – to remind me of the wonderful times I have had in Italy whilst reassuring me that leaving is the best decision for me and my little family, I have decided that I will re-post a selection of past writing for old times’ sake.

I shall call them “Tired Old Tales for Tuesdays”.

Consider yourselves warned.


Popping Out From Behind the Fandango…


status viatoris – being ‘on the way’/being in a state of pilgrimage

… to say HAPPY NEW YEAR!

A bit late, I know, but I wanted to see Mallorca through to its natural conclusion before breaking the spell 😉

I imagine the sudden change in subject from Current Life in Italy to Distant Past in Spain may have come as a bit of a surprise to some, especially as I chose not to usher it in with even the smallest parp of a fanfare.

In fact posting the book chapter by chapter on Status Viatoris was an idea that came to me in the dead of night whilst I was mulling over a lack of success in locating my blogging mojo; and in typical SV fashion, no sooner had the thought popped into my head than I found myself seated expectantly before the computer in my pyjamas…

Although I had long since resigned myself to never making a peso from An English Fandango (unless the clamour for an e-book reaches intolerable decibels, natch), I find I do regret choosing the point of lowest reader traffic in my blogging journey so far to launch it into the bogglesphere.

It feels as though I’ve let it down somehow, and, despite the relief of finally having made a decision about its destiny, I can’t help but worry that I am ill-prepared for the possibility of seeing my little creation sink into oblivion without even a small flurry of bubbles to mark its passing…

Oh the ego is a terrible thing, so it is!

So, 2012 has been and gone since we last spoke, and I for one was a little sad to see it leave.

Because without causing a flap or creating a fuss, it turned out to be a pretty fabulous year for me (poorly Pooches notwithstanding): the house, all bar the leaky roof, is finished; I seem to have landed myself with a highly entertaining business venture; English-teaching is turning out to be a lot more satisfying than I found it nine years ago; I have spent the last two months being paid to translate descriptions of thrilling things to do in Kenya; An English Fandango is slowly being released from the prison of its word document; my relationship with Tigger is growing – although the last time I wrote something similar that part of my life temporarily went tits up – and my previously incorrigible itchy feet are now made conspicuous only by their absence.

Challenged and yet content, ferociously busy and yet fulfilled: it’s only taken thirty-five years for me to be able to cautiously stick my bonce over the parapet and declare that I might, just might, be settled.

And as I doubt very much that I would have been able to reach that point without the increase in confidence gained from the writing of this blog, and most especially from the encouragement and affection of so many of its readers, I want to thank you all hugely for sticking  with me over the last thirty-three months and 328 posts.


This is Status Viatoris, wishing all SV readers, their families, friends and loved ones much health and happiness in 2013 – take care of each other and make every day count, in Italy.

P.S An English Fandango – Granada will have its first airing on Monday 14th January. Don’t miss it!

Living With Celebrity


status viatoris – being ‘on the way’/being in a state of pilgrimage

Whilst I have absolutely no doubts that Pooch is far and away the bestest dog in the whole wide world, it is always nice to be given the opportunity to inform others of that fact; so it was with much delight that I accepted an invitation to write all about him on the blospot blog Coffee With A Canine.

(Click here to connect directly to Pooch’s article).

The author of Coffee With a Canine, Marshal Zeringue, kindly consented to satisfy some of my curiosity with regards to the origins of his blog in the form of the following interview:

What prompted you to set this very original blog in motion?

I started Coffee with a Canine when two things occurred to me: (1) many more of my closest friends had dogs than did not, and (2) so many of the authors I ran across while running the Campaign for the American Reader blogs featured their dogs in their official biographies.  I thought others might be interested in learning more about these dogs and dog-lovers.  The coffee angle may have something to do with my New Orleans roots: conversation seems to require food or drink.

What is your criteria for chosing the people/pets you blog about?

A willingness to share about one’s dog.

Who are the canines that share your life?

I don’t have a dog now and haven’t had one for a long time, but I do enjoy the company of my many friends’ many dogs.

How do you feel about cats?

I like cats well enough…but I’m also allergic, so I keep my distance.

Whilst answering Marshal’s questions about the life Pooch and I share together, I was reminded that this was not actually the first time Pooch had featured on a blog other than Status Viatoris.

In fact way back in May 2010, the delightful Shauna – Fido & Wino (and now bambino makes three…) – asked me to participate in her pet project; R.O.A.R Squad – Rescue Owners Are Rockin’.

How could I refuse?

Well of course I couldn’t, and the result of that interview can be found by clicking here (it was only my desire to protect Pooch from intrusive media attention that prevented me from sharing it with you before now… or I might just have forgotten; I can’t actually remember).

So there we have it; Step Two in the campaign to have Pooch’s name uttered worldwide with the same gusty reverence as that of Lassie, Kommisar Rex, Laika or Scooby Doo.

It can only be a matter of time…

Are you finding it hard to cope with yet another day like this?

Try whiling away the time Pooch-style… (also helps one relax enough to cope with the pressures of celebrity).

This is Status Viatoris, proud mamma to Pooch the wonder dog and utterly totally mind-bogglingly sick of the rain, in Italy.

250th Status Viatoris Blog Post!


status viatoris – being ‘on the way’/being in a state of pilgrimage

An achievement to be celebrated, or a rather embarrassing testament to an obsession for self-promotion?

Unsurprisingly, it is not a question I find myself wishing to examine too closely; the act of writing, and its motives, being a difficult one to categorise.

Only recently have I started describing myself as a “writer”, to those who care to ask.

I may have felt myself to be a “writer” for many years, indeed, wished it more ferociously than I have ever wished for anything, but no matter how much time one spends writing, even writing well, one only truly becomes a “writer” the moment someone, anyone, is prepared to lay down money in exchange for our words.

Thus by virtue of penning informative articles for British people wishing to relocate abroad, I have achieved through banality what more literary endeavours repeatedly failed to deliver.

Status Viatoris blog is now entering into its 23rd month of existence.

And what began as a creative exercise – with the naive hope that it may also in time become a source of income – has now taken on a life all of its own.

I sometimes find myself viewing it (fancifully, I know) as a demanding child: exhausting me with its needs, but whilst all the time developing its very own individuality and charm.

And can’t help but confess to being as curious as the next person to see what it will mature into!

I am certainly proud of the number of regular readers Status Viatoris blog has accumulated over the last two years, without whose cheery and supportive input I am not convinced it would still be running.

Unpaid writing is one thing.

Unappreciated writing; a far sadder state of affairs.

But building up a blog readership large enough to lead to other things is no easy task. And judging by the figures displayed by other blogs I dip into, one that I do not by any means excel at.

Networking – repeatedly visiting lots of other blogs and websites to leave witty and informative comments – would, I am told, be a way forward, but I struggle with the accompanying feelings of insincerity, as well as resenting the time-consuming nature of the activity.

Choosing a particular category for the blog would be another way to help focus on a source of readership. But I want to take advantage of this small platform to write about ALL the things that inspire and define me – Italy, languages, culture, Spain, travel, relationships, atheism, France, humour, wildlife, my love for Pooch, depression, writing, weight struggles, renovations…

Good luck categorising THAT lot!

But despite having to resign myself to the fact that Status Viatoris blog is never going to be an answer to financial independence,  I am hugely grateful for everything else it has brought into my life.

The chance to hone my writing skills, the confidence to start editing my other work for e-publication and tackle a fictional novel, even the ex-pat articles that ironically led to my being at last able to tag myself with my dream job title; they would all have been vastly more daunting without it.

So, dear SV readers, as it is my sincere hope that these 250 blog posts (1,154 Twitter tweets and endless Facebook photos and other titbits) have served to entertain or inform in some way or another, I shall attempt to keep it up for a little while longer!

Question for the day: why do necklace chains always turn into birds’ nests after having be laid out separately in the bottom of your jewellery box, and when, to the best of your knowledge, said jewellery box hasn’t been subsequently subjected to a spin cycle?

Please feel free to respond to this with perplexing everyday questions and answers of your own.

This is Status Viatoris, going off to bake her blog a big chocolate cake. What’s that? Blogs don’t have digestive tracts? Oh dear, may have to help it out then 😉 in Italy.

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