Blogging has changed the way perspectives are viewed. It has revolutionised a thought space for the millions which was once a smug prerogative of the writers, the scared cows of the media houses. Today, these raw, unedited, informed versions of opinions and experiences have opened up the flood gates of information, enriching our lives beyond imagination, adding credence to our existence.
City Express in its quest to record the voice of the bloggers from Bangalore starts with the story of Angela Carson, an expatriate from California and Barcelona who got ‘Bangalored’.
Started blogging to stay connected: It is the whole business of outsourcing that got me to Bangalore in April 2011, said this smart, self assured woman who has her head firm on her shoulders.
The day she arrived in Bangalore, she started her blog - Angela’s Adventures in Bangalore on WordPress. She said, “When I first started my blog, the idea was to stay connected with my friends and family, especially my daughter. My early readers were just 22.”
She added with a smile, “ By a strange twist of fate, a blogger from Bangalore, spotted my blog and then as the story goes, it went viral.” Today her blog, called ‘Angela’s Bangalore’, gets a hit of 1500 a day. Keeping aside the number gamble, let us listen to her story.
Angela who took to writing with such a flare, on life and living as a single white woman in Bangalore, as she calls it, admits, “My entire working life, I have been writing either for marketing or PR. But in Bangalore, I started writing for myself.” Angela, a native of southern California, while on a summer trip to Barcelona decided to stay back when she was just 22. She said, “For the next 18 years, I was visiting Barcelona on and off.”
Got Bangalored: The best thing I like about Bangalore is, it is full of opportunities. She candidly said, “ Before I moved from Barcelona, I was out of work for a year, hit by recession. But here, I saw lot of opportunities for career growth.”
Life in Bangalore was not without its hiccups. After seven weeks in a BPO company, she was again out of work as the particular division in which she was working shut down. She said, “By that time I had even got my two pet cats from Europe and I was faced with deportation.”
Angela’s adventures: In Bangalore, she missed the beaches of Barcelona. “Here I had to be content with the trees around,” said Angela. But the city opened up a whole new world before me. Walking in the streets, the people, IPL, and of course, dating Indian men, threw up a whole new perspective and added a lot of fodder for thought. “I write about things, that I find interesting which makes me curious or gets me thinking,” said a pensive Angela, tilting her head to one side. Sharing insights about her readers she said,“I write about things I see around and that affects me in some way. It is also interesting to note the kind of post that people like to read at different times of the day.”
“ In the morning, it is little more of informative stuff or serious things. As the sun goes down, their choice also changes. They want more juicy sleazy stuff. Some of my posts on my dating life like ‘Being a dirty white secret for an Indian man or the ones on IPL cheerleaders will get more hits during late nights,” she added with a smirk.
“ I have written about so many silly, funny things. But when the Delhi gang rape happened, it really hit me hard. I wanted to write about it. In fact, I did some survey to collect data and researched for 7 whole days, before I finally wrote about it.” But sadly that post didn’t get much hits. Whereas the more frivolous and entertaining ones got more hits,” she adds.
Living her dream: Even if you are meeting Angela for the first time, it is not easy to escape this uncanny feeling of ‘I kind of know her well’. If you are a reader of her blog, this can happen to you.
Laughing over it she said, “ Yeah, I have experienced this. People come and tell me that, I kind of feel that I know you.”
Does she feel comfortable about baring herself in the virtual world? “ I am not all that honest,” she giggled, “ But I try and be myself the best I can.”
Today, living in a posh apartment complex in the city with French windows opening into shaded trees and tall bamboos, she puts her thoughts out for us to read. As some of us following her blog know already that she is busy and excited about the new enterprise she is into these days. “Well, after 17 years of working with start-ups in various executive capacities, I have started my own company with three friends. I am a CEO now.”
Their new social media outsourcing company is two weeks old and is called the ‘ Stratagem Labs’ based out of Bangalore and Sydney. Angela is all excited about the interesting times ahead. I am pretty sure she is, aren’t we?