Cachando Chile… and Beyond?

Flying highMost blogs are personal, but serious bloggers keep their readers in mind, so now I have to ask you a thing or two…

I started Cachando Chile 3 years ago as a place to write about Chile, and it has remained pretty Chile-centric throughout, with just the occasional foray into the great beyond . We’ve explored (and yes, “we” because while I throw out the initial topic, your participation in the discussion comments section is often the best part) travel, the expat experience, holidays and fiestas, social and cultural issues, practical (and not) issues, things we love–and things we don’t. Language is clearly a favorite–and the Glossary of Chilenismos is the all-time top attraction on the blog. And it seems that food not only attracts the hearts of men, but of blog readers as well, because many of the most popular posts are food related–your two favorites of favorites are sánguches (sandwiches) and completos (hot dogs), followed not so far behind by Anthony Bourdain’s Chilean sandwich affair.

There has been much more of course, and I am by no means done with exploring Chile, but I find myself wanting to expand, and this is where you come in.

I’ve been traveling more than ever in the past couple of years–and there are more trips planned for this year. Frequent flyer miles, photos, and great stories are adding up. I’m itching to tell all, but here’s the glitch–where do I do that?

Here, at Cachando Chile? Or should I set up a sister site for everything else?

I have gone back and forth with all the inevitable pro and con weighing–and I’ll spare you the enredo (a great and much-used word that means, basically, a tangled mess) of details–but I would like to know what you think.

Would you do me a favor and just leave a message and let me know?

Should Cachando Chile stay Chile-centric?

Would you like to see a revised version: Cachando Chile…and Beyond that would remain Chile based with side trips to elsewhere?

And while you’re at it… I’d love some feedback on what types of topics you’d like to see more of in the future.

Thanks!

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41 responses to “Cachando Chile… and Beyond?

  1. Here is my two cents worth. Personally I would love to hear about your visits and discoveries of other places. Chile is interesting, but there a lot of fascinating places out there as well. Here is an idea which you’ve probably already considered. How about telling us about an exciting and wonderful corner of the world you’ve discovered and making the natural and obvious parallels to Chile. Just a thought. I’d say, let’s hear it.

  2. Thanks John-yes, that was my thinking on “Cachando Chile and Beyond.” Chile is my home and so I will always have more to say about it–and when I travel, I’m always thinking about the new place in relation to those I know best–Chile and the US.

  3. I really enjoy your blog (being married to a Chilena makes it that much more enjoyable!), and I think it maybe the only blog dedicated to the topic of Chilean culture and all its beautiful strangeness. Having said that, and since you asked for readers’ opinions, I’d vote for keeping Cachando Chile just about Chile. You’ve got the corner on the market, so to speak.

    Whatever you decide, I’m sure it will be well written and enjoyable to read!

  4. Hi Seth- thanks for your comments and kind words. Cachando Chile is not the only Chile-blog out there (check my blog roll for others)… Interesting comment on “Beautiful strangeness.” What can I say–Chile is awesome… and a recent trip to Morocco made me appreciate Chile all the more!

  5. Chile and Beyond is fine by me. You choose the topics, you’re good at it. I am in Chile until 3 Jan. If you want that cup of coffee let me know.

  6. Thanks Jack. I’m actually taking off for colder climes, but will be back before you leave–let’s try for that cuppa!

  7. OK Margaret. Enjoy Christmas.

  8. Hi Margaret,
    I pondered on exactly the same problem awhile back and I was told by several people I was known as Portugal Piglet whatever or wherever I wrote about. I was advised I already had a great following from around the world so don’t change the formula.
    I tell stories about every day life in Portugal. (my bloggin buddies comment on these along with people who live in Portugal)
    Beach reviews (Polite comments from some blog buddies but VERY popular with tourists
    Garden stuff – Buddies and any gardeners who want to add their two pennies worth
    Recipes (it was suggested I kept to Portuguese recipes in line with my blog) so I did create a separate blog for Healthy eating
    Visits abroad ie to France and England – again funny stories or about life.
    Wildlife in Portugal – seems popular
    My most popular post (excluding the post which was freshly pressed was) A Turkish experience in France
    (yet I’m in Portugal)
    I have maybe four categories of followers.

    Those looking to move to Portugal
    Tourists
    Blogging Buddies across the world (these post comments and interact whatever I write about)
    Anyone who wanders on to my site by accident through the search engines

    So after a long winded reflection on my own experience and how my site’s evolved I would say
    stay with your Chile site and perhaps change the title to
    Cachando Chile…and Beyond
    Your chile posts are well indexed with Google so people interested in Chile will still find you and may even find other info interesting.

    At the end of the day I decided to write for me and have some fun. What do you want from your site and who are you writing for?

    Boas Festas e Feliz Natal

    PiP

  9. Oh PiP-you read me so well! You pretty much hit all the points, but I’m tossing and turning at night (well, maybe that IS going a bit far) trying to decide whether to remain purist and faithful to Chile or just admit that my life is Chile-based, but involves much more!
    Sorry I missed your Freshly Pressed post!! Congrats!!
    and thanks for your input!

  10. It’s a difficult one. It amuses me when we have to make a decision and people say “sleep on it!”

  11. Hurray PiP! it didn’t end up in Spam this time!!
    And in Chile, they don’t “sleep on it” but “discuss it with their pillow” (conversar con la almohada) !

  12. I have never commented but have been reading for a while. I would say keeping it Chile centric is best. And maybe having another tab on the blog about your other travels? So, not a whole new domain, but another section.

    That’s just my two cents though :)

  13. Thanks Chelsea–I’m glad you cared enough to leave your opinion–it’s important! And whichever path I finally take, everything will all be linked together!

  14. I vote for keeping it in Chile. Right this minute I’m on a two-week tour with hubby (chileno) and his now USA-based brother down through the southern lakes region. Tonight we’re sleeping at a little hospedaje in Loncoche. Expect to drive to Panguipulli, then take the hour-long ferry on Lake Pirihueico to Argentina, then south to Eskell, Futaleufu, Chaiten and back by ferry to Puerto Montt and home to Concepcion. Is there any place more beautiful than Southern Chile in the spring? Truly, “la copia feliz del Eden”.

  15. Hi Kathleen–that’s a pretty strong argument you’re making there! In fact, your itinerary is on my must-do list. I’ve been south, but not the places you mention–so my interest is very much piqued!
    Thanks for your 2 cents (and for scratching my gotta-know Chile itch!)

  16. I have really enjoyed both sides of your blogs – from the facinating Animitas to your love of accordions. I love your photos too. So, I will read whatever you put out there. The formula has worked so far, but I guess it depends on how deep the well is when it comes to all things Chilean, sometimes a change is good to get the stories flowing once again. Guess I’m not much help!

  17. Thanks Shar–that IS helpful! And I do thank you for your kind words and support. Haven’t seen any sign of the bottom of that Chilean well yet, but it is nice to see what else is going on once in a while too!

  18. Hi Margaret!

    As you know, you’re blog was a great help for me before I came to Chile.
    I’m sure it still will be when you change it a little! I won’t think that will change when you alter the title (and content) a little. I mean, it will still stay a site about Chile with some more subtopics, right? In this respect I would say, the more choice the merrier! I’m sure you’re other posts will be very interesting as well and one blog will keep your head more organized than Cachando Chile and a seperate sister blog. Good luck with your decision and hope to see you next year!

    Saludos!

  19. Hi Laurie! Nice to hear from you–hope all’s going well in Amsterdam!
    Thanks for your input–and yes, the idea is that it would remain a blog based in, but not restricted to, Chile. And, since I spend far more time here than I do anywhere else, there would always have more Chile content than anything else.

  20. I think if a blog is personal it is hard to keep it just about one thing, (whatever that is). You are the blog, whether you do things in Chile or in other places, it is your voice we are listening to. I think Chile and Beyond would be great. There are always “tags” for people to focus on posts about Chile.

    After so much time here it is hard to not let Chile colour your posts, you may find it difficult not to write “Chile” in a sister blog! :)

  21. Good point! I’ve thought about that too–if the sister blog is about travel, what do I do with travel in Chile? There would certainly be cross-over of topics, and, as you said, at this stage of the game, almost everything new gets passed through my Chile filter… In Morocco I kept finding myself saying “we have this in Chile” “we don’t do that in Chile”… but, hey, Look! Another blog post topic!

  22. I may as well chime in-I vote for mostly Chile (there are other Chile blogs but few that last as long) but I’d love to hear about your travels so one blog is fine with me. As you said, it all passes through your Chile filter so that keeps it Chilean. Chile and Beyond….

  23. Thanks Laura– I think I’m coming up with an idea to keep everyone happy (or at least keep me sane!!)…
    Doubt it’s going to happen between now and the end of the year, but soon!!

  24. Almost everything I thought about this has been written already. I think you should keep it in one blog, instead of having two or more blogs, this is about you and what you do, (refer to spidersworkshop here xD)
    Keep writing whenever you like and about whatever you want, as long as it is in the same style CachandoChile has, and your readers will follow. :D

  25. MARMO!! Tanto tiempo!! ¿Cómo estás? Bien espero!!
    Thanks for your comments and vote of confidence!

  26. Yeah, yesterday I had my “examen de grado” in law school, so I was just a internet ghost all this time xD Estoy muy bien y ahora mucho mejor :D

  27. Sí, caché que estabas por terminar… I assume it went well–so CONGRATULATIONS Mr. Attorney!! Celebrate, celebrate, celebrate!!

  28. For me, your blog is about you, your impressions and feelings and does not need to be location-specific. I think you should feel free to write what is appropriate for you in the moment, without having to censor yourself and think, “no, this has to wait until I’m in my other blog”.

  29. Whatever you decide to do, I will go on reading your interesting insights. I like travel blogs as well as Chile blogs, and a host of other topics, like many of your followers. I have a feeling that our paths will continue to cross among all those interests we have in common. Keep at it! I’m sure you’ll do a great job! :)

  30. Most blogs start out on Chile and then move on to other topics, I think it’s a natural transition and those of us who are here simply because we like you and your writing, will read no matter what you choose to write about!

  31. My vote is to keep it focused on Chile. Start another one for other travel related stuff.

  32. You know I believe heartily in one-stop shopping. I like the idea of using tags to separate it out, but why start another blog? People who don’t want to read about travels can just click away. And Chile is travel, and we do think about Chile when we’re not here. Well, anyway, I write about Chile and not on my blog, and it works for me. Seems like most of us do, no?

  33. Thanks Eileen… I guess I feel like one of the differences is that the blog name is very Chile-centric, whereas yours, for example, is very open to the world and there was never any promise of it being just about Chile.
    Readers have expressed all sides of the issue, so no it’s time to make up my mind, pick a direction and go for it!!
    2012 here I come! (See you SOON, BTW!)

  34. Peg,
    First, I’m sorry we didn’t get together this last trip. I couldn’t ask for things to get “crazier” if I wanted them to. As far as your blog goes, I love your writing and your photography so either way I’m happy!
    Wishing you all the best in 2012!

  35. Hi Barb- yes, I’m sorry I didn’t get to see you or anyone else in the Murphy clan–it all just went by so fast! But I’ll be back during the summer–let’s make plans ahead of time!
    And thanks for your kind words about the blog!
    And all the very best to you and yours in the coming year too!

  36. I like your writing style and choice of topics. I would suggest a separate site because it feels that this Chile site very specific and autonomous and it does the job well. I think it might feel awkward to suddenly find a report on say … Australia or other places. Because my wife and I spent so much time in northern Chile I would like to suggest some more focus on the great and beautiful north. You have a broad spectrum of topics which I find very interesting and pleasantly surprising and this is what draws me back again and again to your site. Your a good read.
    ohn

  37. Thanks for your input John. I’m still on the fence about this whole thing. All I know is that I definitely want to write much more in 2012 than I did in 2011.
    I’m glad that you enjoy the blog and hope that I can keep you coming back whatever the topic. also thanks for the suggestion on northern Chile. I haven’t spent a lot of time there recently, but would like to!

  38. Keep Cachando Chile just about Chile, but provide close links to your sister site…

  39. Yup, let’s hear about your travels! Its your unique way of capturing the moment that drives your blog… let it come from all corners of the earth. Oh, and Happy New Year (a little late)!

  40. Margaret, I just discovered your blog in the last hour while I was looking for a wedding venue. I’m marrying a Chilena in April. We intend to move to the States for awhile immediately thereafter, but my heart tells me we’ll be eventually splitting our time between Santiago and Seattle. Now, about your question. I think this blog is you. You bring Chile to life because you live life in Chile and I think when you adventure to other realms, you would bring them to life as well. So, I’d vote for Cachando Chile…and Beyond, with the Beyond an access point to other places. As you said, because you live here in Chile, it will naturally receive the most attention. Buena suerte. Charles

  41. I just got around today to visiting the Arpillera exhibit at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque. Your blog post on the subject was the best thing I’ve found. I’m looking forward to following your writing, where-ever it takes you.

    I went through a similar experience to yours recently in regard to my own blogging efforts. I wrote a blog about making pictures with old film cameras for many years. That went pretty well, partly because I stuck to the subject and didn’t clutter it up with other topics and opinions. However, it got to the point where it was no longer very satisfying to me as there were a lot of other things I really wanted to explore. So, I’ve now put the original blog on hold, and I’m writing a new one I call Everything Else. I doubt it will ever be as widely read as the first one, but I’m having fun with it. I don’t suppose this comment of mine is going to be helpful to you in any significant way, but I just wanted to let you know that I’m looking forward to working my way through what you’ve done so far, and seeing what else you will be coming up with.

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