Recently, I seem to have spent a lot of time looking back at my past. I don’t really know why, but I’ve found myself wanting to revisit things that I’ve done, sometimes going back many (for me) years.
One thing I keep finding really weird, and rather sad, I suppose, is noticing how much has changed over that time.
Six years ago, I was a member in a Play by Email role-playing game. They sent out a lot of emails, so I had a separate email account to keep the rush separate. I was quite active for a time, but eventually other things took over and I started to lose some of interest in the books that it was based around (The Dragonriders of Pern, by Anne McCaffrey, if anyone is interested. They are good books, but there are ones I’m more interested in now). Eventually I fell completely out of the loop, and I drifted to the wayside. Technically I didn’t leave the group until I failed to reply to a role-call a couple of years ago, but I had been inactive for a long time by then.
I re-opened that email account today. I had to get a password reset, it had been so long since I last used it, and the inbox contained a couple of thousand unread emails, which I didn’t even consider giving more than a cursory look through.
It was a bit of surprise to find that, nearly a year after I stopped posting, there was some big leadership row, which was beginning to spill over on to the main mailing lists. The fact that there was an argument didn’t surprise me, as everyone involved was human, and so disagreements were nearly inevitable. What caught me was that a group which, as far as I could tell, had been running for nearly ten years, a couple of which I had been involved in, and which appeared to be going from strength to strength, appears to have collapsed. The website is still around, but it hasn’t been updated for nearly two years, and as far as I can tell the web-page that managed the email lists is now off-line.
Now, some of you might tell me I’m being a bit naïve, assuming the group would still be around today. And on some level I think I realised that it was unlikely. Sure I entertained the idea, from time to time, that I would rejoin, resume my old characters and slot back in, but I never really followed through. Now, looking through these last few emails, it seems like I will never have the chance. And what really got me is, it’s much more of a blow than I ever expected, possibly because of quite how long ago it was.
I never thought I could genuinely miss a something like a website, but it looks like I can.