Friday, January 28, 2011

I Heart Slovenia

I am continually amazed, surprised, flabbergasted, and flummoxed by the attention this little blog receives. While I am fully aware it is not a break-out success with thousands of loyal followers, I'm still shocked when more than two people actually give a poop about what I have to say.

Just last week, the blog passed 5,000 hits. That doesn't mean 5,000 visitors. It simply means the blog's 63 Facebook fans, who receive an email every time I throw a post out here, have been kind enough to return many times. Some of you also forward links to your friends and family. (By the way, if you have forwarded my blog to other people -- Thank you!)

What makes managing the blog especially interesting is seeing where the hits come from. Last October I removed the Feedjit tracking tool that identified individual visitors because (a) it was a major distraction and (b) it had a bit of a Big Brotherish feel to it. But Blogger still provides basic statistical information so I can identify the most popular posts and tell what parts of the world you readers represent.

As of this moment, 96.3% of all hits to Ramblings of a Very Pale Man have come from within the United States of America. Where in the U.S., exactly? I don't know, but I can hazard a good guess that the meat of them are from New York (where I was born and raised) and North Carolina (where I've lived for 20+ years).

But that means 3.7% of the hits come from other countries, and not necessarily the most obvious places. It can be interesting to see which posts attract visitors from what countries.

For instance, somebody in Russia loves the "72 O'Clock" post from September 2010. Every now and then a Muscovite still finds his way to that post. I don't understand the attraction, since it isn't even one of my favorite writings, but I do appreciate the continuing interest.

And the most recent post -- "Backpack Revolution!" -- was the first to draw interest from visitors in South Korea, Iraq, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, among other countries. Couldn't have something to do with the use of the word "revolution" in the title, could it?

Regardless of the reason, and in spite of the small percentage they represent, I am tickled so many foreign visitors have found their way to the blog. In order of number of hits, these visitors represent the following countries:

United Kingdom
South Korea
Saudi Arabia

The best part is learning about places I'd never heard of before. When Slovenia suddenly popped up last month, I had to research it on Wikipedia just to figure out where in the world it is.

Just think about it. One of the two million people living in the third-most forested country in Europe -- possibly in the bustling metropolis of Ljubljana along the Sava River, or the quaint mountain village of Slovenj Gradec with its 15th century religious frescos -- has returned to the blog 15 times in the last 30 days.

Whoever you are, wherever you are, thanks for dropping in!

© 2011 Mark Feggeler

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