|Image by Werner Moser from Pixabay |
I began blogging around 2007. My kids were aged between 4 and 12 (they're now between 17 and 24). I was swamped with caring for the children and trying to manage a marriage that was pressurised by a long commute. My husband travelled to the next city every day. I also had a lot of pressure from the in-laws. They had full control of the household. They watched everyone closely.That was difficult for me. The youngest had started school and once a week, I used to visit a friend of mine who lived in the city centre. I always arrived home before the kids came in from school, but my in-laws didn't like that. In their eyes, a good woman stays at home and has no desire to step outside. There was a lack of privacy and personal space which was suffocating. I'm not saying they were intentionally being mean. Because they were from another culture, they were probably caring for me the only way they knew how. But it wasn't easy to adjust with this. As I'd always loved writing, it became my outlet. I started a blog and poured my heart and soul into it, sharing a lot of the pain in my daily life. Amazingly, people read and responded. I had a message from a woman whose mother was Irish and whose father was Indian. The family had ended up returning to Ireland and this woman was now married to a resident of central Europe. That's where she was living. She told me that reading my blog had opened her eyes. Until reading it, she had never realised how difficult life had been for her mother in India.
|Image by William Iven from Pixabay|
Blogs were Anonymous
Back then, blogs were anonymous. I had a bit of fun crafting a blogging name for myself. Because I'm Irish or more correctly, 'gaelic' which is a more ethnic label than a nationalist one, I wanted my blogging name to reflect that. Back then, a lot of popular names for girls in India ended with 'ika', like Sonalika or Ishika. The previous generation, 'ita' had been a popular name ending (names like Sumita, Amita). Sometimes, because of the popularity of numerology, some people added an extra 'a' to their names. So the writer Shobha Dé became 'Shobhaa Dé'. So keeping all this in view, I came up with 'gaelikaa'. If you can take it that 'gael' means a person of gaelic extraction and that 'ikaa' means a feminine name, 'gaelikaa' could mean an Irish woman, Considering the 'ikaa' is Indian, it could mean an Irish woman in India. It could also mean a Scotswoman. Scots are also gaelic, or 'gallig' as they call it. But a Scotswoman might prefer gallikaa. Or gadhlikaa.
|Image by 377053 from Pixabay|
Two Blogs and More
The first blog was simply called 'gaelikaa'. I always kept the first letter small. I was never 'Gaelikaa'. Only 'gaelikaa'. I liked it that way. I also pronounced that final 'aa' as if it was just one 'a'. Then I got adventurous and started playing around with layouts and headings. That first blog which contained long, reflective posts was ultimately called 'gaelikaa - Out of Ireland, into India'. However, I got tired of long, reflective posts and began to enjoy writing shorter posts. So I started 'gaelikaa's diary', which was meant to have shorter, daily posts. This blog has been a nice place to discuss the differences between the two cultures in which I've lived. It was abandoned for a long time too but I always meant to come back. The original 'gaelikaa' blog still exists, but it's been inactive for a while. It's time to remedy that, I suppose. I reposted a lot of the material, duly treated for indiscretion, on this blog. There's also the book blog, where I haven't reviewed books in ages. Not to mention the writing blog, where I'm trying to get people interested in my content writing skills. I even have a blog about religion.There are about three posts on it. They could all do with updating.
|Image by 8212733 from Pixabay|
Google Lifts Anonymity
Once Google lifted the anonymity on blog writers, it was time to drop the 'gaelikaa' pseudonym. But it had served its purpose. I retained the name on the blog, though. I put too much thought into this name to throw it into the dustbin. As long as this blog remains, the name will too.
Thanks to Pixabay for the Images
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