Monday, August 29, 2005

Strange Visitations (and GK Chesterton)

I have just checked the list of referring sites on my 'Sitemeter' record page. For those of you without blogs or without a 'Sitemeter'- type account, 'Sitemeter' is a web tool that allows you to track how many visitors you've had and which tells you, amongst other things, from where these vistors have come - ie it records the webpage which the visitor was looking at before she/he visited yours. Normally, my record of referring sites shows a list of the usual valued guests together with the odd random 'Google' search for ducks or something. However, over a few hours on the 28th of August my record shows that this site had 35 visitors in a straight row who were referred here by 35 different sites which I have never seen in the records before. Moreover, most of these referring sites are American and have nothing to do with politics or ducks at all - they're mostly family diary/holiday blog sites. I can't see any link to my site on these blogs and neither does there seem much reason why someone should move straight from there to mine.

I am intrigued. Why would this happen?

This mystery comes at an appropriate time, because I am half way through reading a collection of GK Chesterton's 'Father Brown' mystery/detective short stories. If you haven't ever come across 'Father Brown', it's well worth a read if you like the idea of quick-to-read, easy-going but ingenious pre-First World War detective fiction. It's written in a rather genteel and leisurely kind of way, and there's a little Roman Catholic theologising, but Chesterton's dry humour keeps it very readable. It's interesting, too, in that Chesterton often leads us to sympathise with the 'criminal' in his stories and Father Brown is a strikingly non-condemnatory amateur sleuth.

Anyway, I digress. If you have any ideas, theories or, indeed, if you are one of these strange visitors please let know. I'm hoping it has something to do with a notorious, but chivalrous, international criminal called Flambeau. Probably not though.

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