EDITOR’S NOTE: Welcome to the A to Z Challenge, an exercise in self-flagellation we bloggers inflict upon ourselves to teach us discipline as writers and to build audience. During the month of April, I’ll be posting 26 times, once for every letter in the alphabet. Looking on the bright side, we can each be thankful this is an English language exercise and not Khmer, the language of Cambodia, which sets the world record with a 74-character alphabet! After some misgivings, I’ve decided to proceed with my initial idea of blogging about the special people in my life whose names begin with the appropriate letter. There will be difficulties, like having more than one special person whose names begin with the same letter, forcing me to choose. And then there are those letters — O, Q and X among them — where no name springs readily to mind. What will I do then? We’ll have to wait and see!
When I announced my theme and started the A-to-Z Challenge, I said that I wanted to write about the special people in my life. That’s why I’m devoting today’s installment to my readers, who are pretty special, too!
One of the best things about blogging is knowing that my words — sometimes silly, sometimes serious — have reached people all over the globe. I firmly believe that a lot of differences could be resolved if we’d all just learn to talk and listen to one another.
Here in the United States, I’ve felt ashamed that one of our presidential candidates has run a campaign of hate, talking about building new walls at a time when we should be working to tear down existing walls, like poverty, hunger, illiteracy and intolerance, that divide the world’s people.
When I look at my readership map, shown above, my home country is colored in red, signifying that most of my readers come from my homeland. But what I really enjoy is looking at the flags that represent other countries with citizens who have visited Roamin’ Gnomials in 2016 alone. Those nations are shown in yellow on the map, and it is my hope that every square inch of my map will one day be colored-in.
I want to thank you all for spending a part of your day with me as I’ve worked through this challenge. I’ve enjoyed hearing from you, and have enjoyed reading and posting to your blogs, too. I wish I’d had the time to read even more!
Let’s work together to tear down walls. Let’s elect leaders who will bring us together, not force us apart. Together, let’s make this world a better place, one where the word “xenophobia” has disappeared from all the dictionaries in every language. Let’s work to make it an archaic word, one that has no meaning for future generations.