My silence when it comes to this blog has been pointed out to me a few times lately. Although much time has been spent writing lately, I do not think there has been much in the way of new stories to share. I have been adapting and simplifying earlier reflections, many of which have been shared or at least hinted at here, as I try to fit them into chapters. Perhaps stories I need to expel from my draft will find their way here.
I said above that I do not think there has been much in the way of new stories, but I feel like I am still learning these stories as I write and re-write them. A person who described hearing his neighbour through their shared wall as something he would miss happened to also be a person who struggled to hear anything, even with his hearing aids turned on. Who lacked community in Port Melbourne, according to one man, happened to be the same category of people who did not include his business in their list of real estate agents. As more observations about what people experienced and the social networks they were are part of are pulled together, it becomes easier it is to float away from what people said. To some extent this is a necessary part of my own analysis.
As the gap widens between the dates on my field notes and the dates on my drafts, it is reassuring that the accounts of events, places and people I heard, read or built up through experience can still push little observations my way. It is as if people from Port Melbourne are re-emerging in my text, and so it is always a little disheartening to have to respond by striping away the most identifying details and pruning these stories back into examples able to support an argument.