Posted by: Brad Nixon | November 4, 2019

Ten Years of “Under Western Skies”

Ten years ago, on November 4, 2009, I sat down and wrote, “It was a dark and stormy night ….”

No, wait. That was someone else.

I wrote, “This had to be the day.”

Perhaps not the most auspicious introduction to what, today, has been ten years of blogging. Not so memorable as, “It was the best of times …”; “Call me Ishmael …” or “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”

It was a start. I had no clue I’d be at it for so long.

I wrote a lighthearted piece of fluff, 167 words long, based on an imaginary encounter with a fictional character from a television show dating from my childhood. Those 167 words, though, served to get me off the mark. In the ensuing ten years, UWS has let me comment on subjects I had in mind from the outset, but it’s also stimulated me to develop some other interests more fully than I could have anticipated.

A signifiant portion of that engagement has derived from contact with the hundreds of writers and readers I’ve met virtually in those ten years. That’s you, my readers.

Therefore, as I do every year on the anniversary, I thank for you reading, for the likes and comments. Particularly, I’m pleased to read what you have to say from places, cultures, points of view that are different from mine.

What’s in store as I begin year 11?

The primary topics are likely to persist: travel, architecture, literature, the outdoors and the critical threats to our environment. Precisely where I’ll travel, what buildings I’ll encounter, what I’ll read or where I might hike are open questions; I don’t know.

What I do know is that I look forward to what you have to say in your posts and your comments here.

Traveling on, I suppose, is the best way to express it. There’s a lot to see, understand … or at least inquire about. Some posts will be armchair travel: explorations of books, film, imagination. Some of it will be vicarious, courtesy of where you go, what you see, what you write.

There’s not an infinite amount of time allotted to us, so let’s make the best of it. Keep looking. Be mindful. Open roads beckon. The trail bends up ahead, and we don’t know what we’ll encounter there. Let’s go.

Thank you.

Oobop shebam.

NM Rt 90 Brad Nixon 6589 680

© Brad Nixon 2019. Header photo © M. Vincent 2019, used by kind permission.


  1. Congratulations, and thank you for all the thoughtful, engaging posts. Looking forward to a new year of mutual travels. Andiamo!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Grazie! And thank you for the constant support and enthusiasm … not to mention all the photos.


  2. Congratulations, here’s to the next decade of well written posts accompanied by excellent photos.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Marion. You’re one of the traveler/writers I’m delighted to have met.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Auguri on an entire decade of sharing so much inspiration! Looking forward to all that is ahead.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Grazie mille, Stacy. You’re an exemplar of the traveler/writers I’ve met on this trip. And I WILL get to Libreria Acqua Alta. Avanti!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve come a little late to the party, but I’m certainly looking forward to whatever piques your interest in the future, and what you choose to share.

    After all, had it not been for Under Western Skies, I wouldn’t have watched a friend pull Sir Gawain and the Green Knight from my bookshelf, or heard him ask, “What the dickens is this?” I couldn’t help myself. “Well,” I said, “it’s certainly not Dickens.”

    Thanks for that laugh — and for all the explorations you’ve led us on.

    Liked by 1 person

    • And this comes back to you, in spades, for all you’ve introduced me to. Yes, Gawain will be back. Hony soyt quy mal sy pense.


  5. Well done on the 10th. I started blogging on wordpress also ten years ago but my blogs I had then didn’t last. It takes quite some staying power to keep going.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Val. I’ve had some pauses, including one that lasted 16 months. The point is to keep traveling on. I look forward to visiting your blog.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Wow, ten years already?! How time flies. The depth and breadth of your posts has been extraordinary. I’ve enjoyed the decade of your accomplishment. Thanks not only for the entertainment, but also, and more importantly, the education. Cheers! Keep ‘em coming.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, La Boheme. And thank you for reading.


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