Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Teaching an old dog new tricks

I guess I should start out by introducing myself, I'm Harry Blalock, the guy with the shaved head on the left. That's my beautiful wife Kelli next to me, and as you can see by the wrinkles at the corners of our eyes, we have reached that point in life referred to as middle aged. In my case the truth is it's probably way farther than middle age for me, but that's purely speculation on my part. Kelli and I live on the island of Saipan, which is the capitol island of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. Our daughter Sarah lives with us currently, and our son Josh is in the Air Force in Texas. We have lived on the island of Saipan for 11 years now, and it has indeed become home for us.

I manage 2 radio stations on island, KZMI - 103.9 FM and KCNM - 101.1 FM, I've been with them for 6 1/2 years now, amazing how quickly time flies. Kelli is the Executive Assistant to David M. Sablan, the President of Century Insurance, Vice President for the Tan family's hotels, and one of the best known people in Micronesia.

Writing and having an online presence are nothing new to me, but I have been holding out for a long time about starting a blog. I've been doing more and more online recently though, and it has all seemed to be pushing me in this direction. Of course I've been putting my weekly commentary, Food For Thought - www.chamorro.com/fft online for nearly 7 years now. But that was pretty easy, I wrote my commentary anyway for the air, so now I was just posting it to somebody else's website.

Then I started getting into underwater photography, and I quickly realized that storing all those pictures on your computer could take over all available hard drive space in no time, so I had to find an alternate storage option. That wound up taking me to Smugmug on the recommendation of a friend of mine. I decided to get the Professional level of Smugmug, which gave me unlimited storage of all my video's and pictures, and also let me set my own pricing for them in case people wanted to buy the pictures online. But having a website isn't much good if nobody ever sees it or visits it, so I quickly started learning about the importance of marketing it and building customer traffic. You can take a look at some of my pics of Saipan and my underwater shots at www.saipandiver.smugmug.com And yes, if you really fall in love with some of the underwater shots, you can buy them at reasonable prices right off the website. The quality of the pictures is awesome, I ordered a bunch just to make sure.

The next logical step seemed to be to start a blog, as they seem to be amazingly popular these days. It's a great way of helping to market my pictures, but I believe it will also come to be much more. I have done journals a couple times in my life, once on a trip to Bali. I still have those journals and read them periodically, it's like taking that trip all over again, all the sudden I'm magically transported back to Bali and can almost see and touch all the different things that impressed me while I was there. I guess I'm looking at this blog to do the same sort of thing, act as a kind of journal for my life, to keep track of what I'm doing, what I'm thinking, and where I'm going. It's always good to have a record of it, because I'm finding that the older I get, the worse my memory becomes, and I'm forgetting some very cool aspects of my bizarre life. At least this way I should be able to have some kind of record from this point forward of my thoughts as I go along.

It's hard to say what I may wind up writing about here, as this is really probably more for my benefit than yours, but you're welcome to take periodic peeks inside my head if you'd like, and I promise to throw up some cool pictures on a regular basis.

Feel free to make comments or to contact me if I talk about something of interest to you. And with that, I think I'll say so long for now.


KelliOnSaipan said...

Hey, what's with the yukky picture of me when we have some nice ones? lol - Nice blog, though. It's about time you started journaling our bizarre life out here. I'm looking forward to future entries.

Walt said...

Cool! I've added the link to this blog from your profile on the welovesaipan.com site.