I think sometimes we forget that there is more to us than the little bubble we confine ourselves to on a regular basis.
Case in point: last week one of the founders of the Iceland Writers Retreat asked if any of us delegates from the April 2014 group would be interested in writing a blog post for the emerging website, Stuck in Iceland, which is aiming to become a well-renowned Iceland travel blog. Since coming back from the Writers Retreat and feeling very inspired, I have been trying to write as much as I can, and thought this would be a good excuse for me to do some more, and with a deadline attached to it so I’d be forced to actually finish it. Naturally, it seems that for me, when there are deadlines, there is writer’s block, so getting it finished was a bit of a struggle, especially since it was such a personal story of my experience in Reykjavik.
After many compatibility issues with my document and the pictures I was sending off as part of the blog, I sent it on its merry way before heading to my local farmers’ market for the remainder of the afternoon. I’ve done writing for external blogs before, and expected the results would be similar – I’d get a few likes on Facebook and Twitter, and that’d be it. But, next thing I knew, the founder of Stuck in Iceland messaged me to tell me that my blog had made it onto the most popular Icelandic news website. Again, I didn’t expect much from that – who cares really about some silly Canadian girl’s travel adventures?
Imagine my surprise when I saw that not only was I featured on this popular Icelandic news website, but that they’d actually written a short profile about me (in Icelandic) and linked to both the blog I’d written for Stuck in Iceland and the post I wrote about Iceland on this Journeys of the Featherless blog. My hit count kept rising, my Twitter notifications were off the hook, and strangers were connecting with me in as many ways possible to tell me they liked my story, and how appreciative they were of the kind words I said about their country. Having never “went viral” before, and never really getting more than under 100 hits on something, I was completely overwhelmed and in a bit of shock.
Much of this probably comes from the small nation mentality of Iceland – one guy I met while I was there told me that Icelanders have a bit of an “inferiority complex” and feel great pride anytime they’re mentioned or shown in a public, international sphere. I cannot stress this enough – Iceland is my favourite place I’ve ever been to in all my nearly-twenty-four years, and Icelanders should all feel extreme pride for calling the country home.
Since this massive bout of encouragement, as well as the establishment of connections with so many strangers who empathized with my story, I’ve felt like doing nothing but writing. Which is good – anything that gets me motivated to write is a good thing! Perhaps this has given me insight into what my “job” is as I try and try to continue to write – to pen my feelings as best I can, and maybe these words will strike a chord with someone else. Sometimes the world seems so big and large that it’s easy to feel insignificant. But your actions, your words, can affect even those who are strangers to you. Even if it’s just for a brief moment, the feeling that they have as a result of your words or actions can connect the two of you forever. The littlest things can have the capacity for inspiration.
I’m not a religious person but I’d have to say that this experience reinforces my belief that “god” is not a singular spiritual entity; rather, god is the space between people, and the “magic” that connects us through that space.