Snoop Snoop


Sometimes the world of the net can be a really interesting place, and at other times, it can be mean and vicious and very lonely.

Some of us have taken to putting site trackers or site meters on our sites so that we can keep an eye out for those who visit. I watch the one on my web site because I'm curious as to which pages get visited the most.

Late in the fall last year I popped over to check the site stats and saw that someone had been looking a lot of images - well over a hundred and had actually been on the site for a long time.

Frequently the location of the visitor is only given in code but this time the ISP location was quite clear, for it said I glanced over at the time of the visit and it appeared that the "visitor" was still on my site.

Quickly I popped up my aol IM thingie and saw one of the two names there highlighted. I smiled and typed a quick message.


I got back a "LOL" and my daughter then asked something to the effect of "how'd you know?"

She was, after all, the first member of the family to find the site that I had kept hidden for so many years.

We chatted for a bit and then signed off.

That was in the fall, and I blinked, and the semester ended.

And just the other day, I found myself cropping a photo of her so that I could insert it into her new "international student" ID. NSR makes ID's. Who would have thought....

Just hours later we watched her walk through the security doors and into the boarding area where she waited for her flight to London and then a second one that would take her to summer school in Germany.

While we slept, she flew and in the morning I got up to check the mail. I found the following

Subject line: London

"Hey guys i am at a little cheap internet station in London. My flight was great. I sat next to a really nice British guy who is 20. His parents live in Ann Arbor and he visits them often. He got my luggage out of the overhead compartment for me... haha. So we talked for half of the flight and I slept for the other half….”

I thought that was so cool, to have a real time message from a “cheap internet station” in London, that let us know that at least half the initial journey was over.

When it works, it really works well.

So there I was in the stats page of my site meter the other day, and up pops a visit from someone who had spent an hour there, and had looked at over a hundred images. I didn’t recognize the number, but a quick search of the European “whois” brought out the fact that the visit originated with Deutsche Telekom AG.

Deutschland eh?

I fired off a quick E to said student with the title line that said “Snoop Snoop”

The reply:

Hey, I was hoping that u would notice I had been looking at ur pictures :). I got really excited when i remembered i could find ur website and look at ur pictures and stuff. I was showing them to my friends ...I told my friend Dana that I thought u would notice who was looking at ur website :)... and i was pleased that u had done exactly what i thought. I hoped u would like seein all those germany hits :)..

Well, ok, Yes, that was kind of neat.

But am I really that predictable?

Although it might seem so, you never know what’s around the next bend in the road.

This recent exchange has given me a great deal of encouragement about my web site project, for it has reminded me of one of the basic reasons that I built that site, and that was to share with my children, and who knows, maybe even their children, just what it was like to be along for the ride.