As with all fairy tales, it starts once upon a time, with a starry-eyed girl who owned a computer after great sacrifice.
She did not celebrate her 18th birthday with a run-of-the-mill debut into society, as was expected, but she asked her parents to buy her a PC instead. Back then, owning such a thing was akin to owning a cool car that you cruised around with whilst in university.
Months later, when telecommunication providers started offering exorbitantly priced dial-up internet connections to the homes of unsuspecting customers, she signed up for one, too. This resulted to numerous epic battles. She used her otherworldly, inhuman strength to erect a massive wall between her parents and the telephone at home. No longer can her elders make calls to the outside world!
No cellular phone would come until many seasons hence. ‘Twas a siege that would last years.
She lorded it over the telephone wires, resulting to strange modem sounds all day long as she surfed websites powered by AOL, Tripod and Geocities. She discovered Salon.com and Yahoo!Groups. She detested IRC chats because of the creeps but loved websites and started making her own pages, using nasty drag-and-drop utilities and overly large images.
Thus began my journey in the dawn days of Interwebs exploration.
My history in the Internet could very well be written in the context of my growth and development as a blogger and webmistress. This blog you are now reading, ShiBytes.com, is very well a culmination of more than a decade of experience, hits and misses, endings and beginnings.
My websites have journeyed around the World Wide Web since my first attempts in 1999. I started blogging and making my own layouts at Pitas in 2001, then moved to LiveJournal in 2002. Later that year, I was able to purchase my very first domain and migrated my blog there. I ran it then using GreyMatter.
As an early adopter at the now-defunct UJournal service, I was given site-embed privileges in 2003. Thus, I was able to update my blog through a LiveJournal-like interface and have the content show up on a website. In 2004, with UJournal gone and Greymatter not being up to par, I moved back to LiveJournal with a paid account.
In 2005, I discovered WordPress and started using this as my blogging software. I bought a domain (RantRave.org, which I no longer own) specifically to serve as my blog, but this project did not last very long.
I moved to Blogger in 2006, because I pretty much got everything free – subdomain, hosting space, bandwidth, image storage and even SEO.
In November 2008, I bought a new domain (StrangeSky.org, which I no longer own, as well), to serve as my blog. I was not able to update that often, and felt that this spot online was not really me at all. In July 2009, I purchased another domain (DivaDragon.com, which I also dropped) and moved my blog there. I did not like the domain name very much, feeling that it was just one dimension of my personality.
In July 2010, I purchased my fourth blog domain (MadameShi.com, no longer mine), this time with my name on it. It was more like me, but after a few years of occasional blogging and not quite getting the writing gratification I wanted, I allowed the name to expire and took the blog offline late in 2012. Since then, I took a hiatus from the blogosphere, one that lasted for almost two years.
In July 2014, I bought Shinrei.org, which I have not renewed, to serve as my personal blog. It lasted until the end of the year, when I decided to rebrand my online presence after a huge upheaval in my offline life at the start of 2015.
ShiBytes.com was first purchased in 14 January 2015, where I blogged actively until March that year. For the rest of 2015, I was busy with a new job and my pregnancy. I allowed this domain to expire early this year.
However, on 19 April 2016, nine days after the birth of my first child, a beautiful baby girl, I decided to buy the domain again and give blogging a fresh start and renewed perspective.
This site will not merely serve as my online journal but will also showcase different aspects of my personality and my numerous interests. It will be a place where people can read my experiences and ideas. In other words, you will find me online here.
It took me almost two months to get things running on this blog, what with the challenges of being a working mother. But here I am now, in a new chapter of my journey in the virtual and real worlds. Join me for the ride. It will never be perfect or smooth, but it will be one heck of an awesome time.
Image credit: Pixabay
This is in response to one of the more common questions that bloggers are prompted with:
What fictional character do you most identify with?
Here is a non-exhaustive list of commonalities, in no particular order:
1. We are the only female child of our parents. (In my case, I am the only child.)
2. We are both interested and knowledgeable in martial arts and weaponry.
3. We like working alone.
4. We use intensive physical training as a means of stress relief.
5. We like to fight and get paid for it. Sometimes, we do it for free, too.
6. We both specialize in short-bladed weapons.
7. We wear primary colors as our trademark fight costume. I also have a red kung-fu uniform, but it’s not as revealing as hers. (C’mon, who can really fight in that?)
8. We like our men to be as good a fighter as we are, hopefully even better.
9. We have obsessive-compulsive tendencies.
10. We had really good masters who trained us.
11. We use our mental powers to keep ourselves alive.
12. Our reputations often precede us.
13. We have many enemies and precious few friends.
14. We have a violent nature that only discipline through years of rigorous training can keep in check.
15. Finally, we have a lingering, undeniable dark side, no matter how hard we try to suppress it.
Image credit: Marvel Comics