When I started this blog a year ago, I did it for two reasons: 1) to have something quiet to do in the mornings until my wife woke up, and 2) to share information about our new life in Mexico with my friends and former coworkers who thought we were crazy for moving here.
The idea to start a blog came from meeting my fellow expats who had blogs – and there are a lot of them! Apparently, the cool thing to do nowadays is run off to a foreign country and then start a blog to document your experiences.
So, like the victim of a bad after-school special about peer pressure, I started this blog.
Although I was new to the blogging world, I expected that it would work like this: I would write an article, occasionally respond to a comment from a reader and then move on to the next article.
At least on paper, that certainly seemed reasonable.
What I didn’t expect was the amount of one-on-one interaction that I would have with readers. As soon as I published the first article, people started writing me directly to ask questions about moving to Mexico.
As the site became more popular (over 150,000 views in January) and the articles started appearing in newspapers across Mexico, the number of daily e-mails and messages grew exponentially.
To date, we have responded to over 3,500 emails and messages from readers. Fortunately, my wife helps me keep up with it all – she’s amazing!
Although answering all these messages takes up a few hours a day, we both really enjoy helping people realize their dreams of moving to Mexico.
We’ve helped people avoid scams by referring them to trusted real estate professionals, lawyers and even insurance agents. We also check back with people that we refer to make sure that the experience went well.
We discovered that one of the advantages of having a popular blog is that businesses seem quite eager to make sure that we’re happy. That means keeping the people that we refer happy.
It makes our day whenever we get an email from a reader thanking us for a referral and giving us an update on their lives. Those emails inspire us to keep at it.
Several of the people that we have helped now live in the area and we have become good friends with many of them. That’s the coolest part of the whole experience.
Let’s Wrap This Up
Some readers may have noticed the reduced the number of articles that we post a month. We did that intentionally in order to keep the site at manageable level.
If the site gets too popular, we risk losing the human element that we love so much — and we certainly don’t want that to happen.