Just shy of three years ago, this blog came into existence. It had a very simple layout and was located at joshweinstein.wordpress.com. Over time, it grew in both scope and traffic, precipitating the move to a more professional layout and a re-branding as Develop Economies, a name I came up with at the spur of the moment. This week, the blog will reach half a million pageviews, which is something I never could have imagined. And in the beginning, there was only one reader – my dad.
Today is Father’s Day, so I want to talk a little bit about the support my family gave me through this process. After college, I started on a more traditional path, working as a strategy consultant for three years in Boston, before moving all my belongings into the family basement and leaving for the Philippines. In the last three years, I have traveled and lived all over Africa and Asia, with seemingly little direction other that pursuing fulfilling jobs where I am challenged and doing meaningful work. And, while he doesn’t always approve of the places I choose to go, at the end of the day, what matters most to him is that I am pursuing the things that I am passionate about. One of the best manifestations of that support has been through this blog.
In the beginning, my father was the one and only reader. He used to comment on my articles under different pseudonyms – mostly characters from the Ayn Rand novel Atlas Shrugged. I am not sure he really cared much about the posts on development, but read them anyways because he enjoyed my writing and wanted to learn more about what I was doing. The posts about travel and culture appealed more to him, but, again, he was happy to read and comment on it all.
A few days ago, after nearly three years living abroad, I moved back to the United States for good. This blog serves as a record of those three years, and it charts my own personal and professional growth. So, for Father’s Day this year, I am going to publish Develop Economies – all 200,000 words – into a book. This will be the final post in that book, even though I will continue to write posts for the blog. It is a way of showing my gratitude for the support he has given me these last few years.
So, thanks for the support dad, and happy Father’s Day.