Introduction/Missed Opportunities: How to not become a (bitcoin) millionaire.steemCreated with Sketch.

No face - but at least something out of the ordinary ;)

I. General introduction
II. Years of ignorance
III. What to expect

I. General introduction

Well, Hello everyone! Good to be here. I’ve been following things for a couple weeks now and I finally managed to finish this introduction post. Since I never did any blogging before, that was… work. With the added difficulty that I am not a subject that I think about a lot ;)

So, who am I?

Let’s start with Geography: I’m a Soviet-Union-born German of Volga German decent. Chances are, if you don’t share that ancestry, you have no idea what that is about. Check Wikipedia if you’re interested.

Side note: If you happen to believe that the end of the USSR was a tragedy, f*** you. Had to be said.

Profession: Approaching the end of my time in school I decided to join the military and become an officer. That can offer a generally good package of skills and experiences, depending on the path you take and the kind of person you are.
For me it was mostly these:

  • You will be forced in front of people: the people in your platoon don’t care if you’re the quiet type. Deal with it.
  • You have to be fit, being lazy is not an option. To a degree, that was naïve of course, but I’m probably fitter than I would have been otherwise.
  • If it turns out not to be your thing, you leave with leadership skills, a college education (Economics in my case) and experience with lots of different kinds of people: good and bad, interesting and extremely annoying, you get the picture.
  • More than a decade later I would add the following: You get a lot of time to get to know yourself and chose a new path to walk.

So, the military and myself, we happen to not be the best fit - but what do you know when you’re just about to leave school. Some people spend decades in cubicles, I jumped out of planes.


Source

Don't get me wrong, I'm not advising to join the military! It’s not all fun and sunshine. One has to know what one is getting into – and what that can mean someday. Geopolitics can change faster than you can say ‘pickles’. Just the reasons why I did, what I did.

Moving on…

Besides my dayjob I’m a seeker of knowledge, though some people may refer to that as an information junkie. Let's call it PII/Poly-interested individual (hmmm Pi…). I’m a man of many ideas, which is probably related to the knowledge seeking and may cause the founding of a startup at some point. And I am an investor in startups (equity-based crowdfunding), junior miners (I guess I’m a contrarian at heart) and now cryptocurrencies, which is how I got here in the first place. Sadly, that latter only happened this year, but more on that in part II.

I stumbled upon Steemit when I began informing myself about blockchain technology and various coins. And here I am. I wanted to try blogging for years, but it always had too much of an opportunity cost attached to it. I guess part of what caught my attention with Steemit, even though I didn’t actually realize it up until writing this, is that it lowers your opportunity cost of entry into writing. @thecryptofiend has contributed to that realization with his “invest your time” idea. Guess I will finally be sharing some of that accumulated knowledge and maybe even a couple ideas. Collecting them on paper hasn’t been very productive so far.

My most audacious goals in life are

  1. Achieve immortality – the slowest, most one-directional form of time-travel!
  2. ‘Build’ a self-sufficient forest in the Sahara (proof of concept for terraforming)
My avatar, by the way, is the volcano Emi Koussi from the Tibesti mountains in Chad. A strangely beautiful place I plan to visit someday.


That shall be the general introduction. What follows is a lengthy account of my way into the realms of the blockchain and the decisions I made (or didn’t make) on the way, life advice included ;). If that is not for you, just jump to part III.

II. Years of ignorance


tldr: My long walk into cryptocurrencies, lessons learned for life and investing: don’t waste your opportunities. But don’t despair if you did, there will be others if you just open your eyes.

Insight vs Procrastination

Well, I first read and thought about Bitcoin in…. [drum roll]… 2010. Sadly, that does not make me one of the lucky really early adopters. When I read about it on those endless internets of ours, I thought it was a very interesting and promising new development. I should try this “mining software”, I thought. My computer was running most of the day anyway, might as well run 24/7. But it wasn’t immediately apparent how to mine it, so I postponed it. Gaming seemed much more interesting at that moment… And I don’t even remember which game to blame.

Then I thought about buying some, just to try it out. And if it worked as described, maybe invest a couple hundred euro and see where things go. Didn’t seem too unreasonable. After all, I studied Economics and one of the most interesting subjects at that time was the European monetary system: possibilities to make the Euro more viable and how likely (or unlikely) the discussed methods were to be implemented or succeed. So betting a little on the far off chance that some anonymous guy’s garage project would amount to a meaningful medium of exchange and/or store of value seemed to have an acceptable risk-reward-ratio (both quite huge). Just hedging risk. Or mere speculation, just like buying Ford stocks in 2008. :D

Well, you guessed it, I didn’t buy Bitcoin either. I could blame the lack of usability of course and that’s certainly part of it. But mostly it was me being too lazy. Opportunity was starring me in the face and I blinked. Hard. Gaming, studying or just reading up on all kinds of interesting things and projects. If I put half the money I spent on Kickstarter into bitcoin…


(Source)

If anyone knows a way to clone yourself, I need 10 copies please. Most would do productive things, though I would probably spare one to start binge gaming again, at least for a while. Even then, nine selfs should be enough to make world domination happen. But I’d be a benevolent ruler, I swear!

BTC: The Second Encounter

Anyway, BTC was at some 10 cents, I think, when I completely forgot about it again. Next time I heard about BTC was when it hit $1000, which according to coinmarketcap was in 2013. Well… that was just too much. If FOMO is a thing, is Post-Missing-Out-Disorder also a thing? There’s probably a name for what I mean, but let’s just call it PMOD and say I had that. Missing a 10 cents to $1000 move due to laziness would give you some temporary disorder, right?

Apart from all the “you could have” thoughts that plagued me - the idea of an island in particular, I like islands - I was at least correct in considering that price too high and didn't jump in. But instead of waiting and watching the further development, which would have allowed me to learn about the creation of altcoins, I simply pushed it out of my conscious thinking, right along with my nonexistent island.

I’m a rather unemotional person (people often think I don’t give a shit, which is not true, at least most of the time) and quite good at putting baggage into the psychological trashcan (the rare case of not-giving-a-shit being healthy), but the whole BTC thing was just… annoying to even think about. Damn PMOD...

Occasional news

Since 2013 I wasn’t reading much in the way of tech news. Life started happening and for some reason you can’t sit around reading at work... very strange really. Occasional tidbits popped up in the ‘normal’ news like BTC hits low, BTC hits high, BTC used for drugs on the oh so dark darknet, China will ban BTC, Russia will ban BTC, the DAO, bla…

Wait, wait, wait… the idea of the DAO, or the little that I heard of it, almost rekindled my interested in understanding ‘this blockchain thing’. Then it got hacked. Then it got returned to the pre-hack state, but somehow not all of it. Didn’t understand and lost interest.

Some time later Microsoft added Ethereum to its developer tools. There it was plain to see: Technological disruption occurring before my eyes. Where can I buy shares of this Ethereum company? I can’t? Damn. Google didn’t help with that. In retrospect, I guess I was just asking it the wrong questions…

The curtain is finally removed

Well, jump to 2017 and boy did I miss a lot. Coins everywhere, all colors, stripes and whatnot. Specialized blockchains, banks experimenting with blockchain ledgers and international trade payment facilitated via those same blockchain ledgers… no, other blockchain ledgers. Well, once that mental dam broke, I started reading and learning and trying to figure things out. When I learned about Steemit, I was so excited/distracted?, I even spelled my account name wrong upon registration… No matter, I’ll just run with it.


Well, the whole endeavor finally broke the PMOD. And now I am on a quest to set up wallets and accounts (because convenience apparently isn’t a thing yet) and checking out coins and ICOs. The amount of stuff to learn and do absolutely qualifies as a quest, wouldn't you agree?

So what’s the morale of the whole story? Don’t be passive. Don’t ignore your gut. If opportunity walks by, grab it and hold on like there’s no tomorrow. Lift up your lazy ass and try failure is better than never having tried. You grow with your failures, but you will always regret letting opportunity go to waste.

III. What to expect going forward

Since I am blessed/cursed with ever changing interests, topics may be various, though I will at least try to focus on a couple areas. We’ll see. Potential subjects in decreasing order of current interest:

  • Investment: Cryptocurrencies (obviously),Commodities, Stocks
  • The Future: The End of Ageing/Life extension, space travel
  • Lifehacking and self improvement
  • Startups: I did some crowd investment, with mixed results, may post my thoughts and conclusions on that (specifically why I think the failures failed)
  • Economics: If I do, I'll try to keep it shorter than this ;)
  • Games: Not much going on currently. But several Kickstarter games are still on the list. Just started Torment, but where to take the time… Waiting for Star Citizen to release single player mode.
  • Photography: My camera is mostly gathering dust right now, so this post was a good occasion. Might post some old photos or make some new ones.


(Source)

If you like what you read or got interested in what you might see in the future, hit that follow button and sail along toward those golden shores. I will do my best to make it worth your while.


Did anyone else have similar ‘hiccups’ with BTC/blockchains? Maybe we can have some 'bitcoin-ignorers anonymous' meetings ;) No, seriously, do tell. I’m interested to know how others dealt with those events. And what fuzzy feelings you had, realizing what you missed.

Or did you act completely different? Jumped right in? What motivated your decisions?


Baseless prediction to finish off: BTC dominance by end of 2017: <10% (one way or the other).

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I f you like you can also post in German language. There is good support for German authors, too. Tag your post with "deutsch". Try it out. Welcome!

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Thanks. I'll probably post in both languages, when I think it's interesting enough.

It is too easy to sit back and believe really good things are very unlikely for you. When you start doing you start learning and life is just more interesting!

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Yes! One may not go from rags to riches, but it'll certainly get better, one way or another. Being active, not passive, alone makes one more content.

I SAW ETHER WHEN IT WAS 0.01 BUT WAS TOO YOUNG TO CARE (18yo)
So I totally know how you feel man.

Also If you did startup investment you HAVE TO TALK ABOUT THE RIDICULOUS AMOUNT OF ICOS right now Its stupid. Most of them just want the cold hard cash they make from the spread between the opening of the ICO and its closing.

Welcome to Steemit! Your post was awesome!

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Yeah, that sounds just as bad ;)

I have to disagree with your statement on the number of ICOs being ridiculous though. You have to consider that we're talking about a fully global market. Who knows how many start-ups around the world, each month try to raise money for the next Coke/Red Bull/whatever alone ;) Compared to that these ICOs have highly differing goals: money, storage, computation, IoT communication, tokenizing real world assets, etc.

Yet the number of ICOs is compounding a problem: A lot of peoples due diligence stops half a page into "we'll be the everything of everything and have all the usecases" written on a beutifully designed website. Some find reassurance by the perceived reputation of the developers or someone who works with them. Or someone is only suggested to be working with them. That's why the wild west theme applies so well.

Also, would you blame a good and honest project for making an ICO now instead of waiting for the current exubarance to pass? Even good projects act rational when jumping on a bandwagon, if it assures their continued development. That makes trying to find them among the cashgrabbers and soon-to-be-never-finished projects all the harder :/

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That makes trying to find them among the cashgrabbers and soon-to-be-never-finished projects all the harder :/

Of course and I fear that this may bring more trouble to the crypto world as a whole. Since investors "trust" those companies. 2 out of 5 can be good and the rest is pure PnD it truly is the wild west. I think this scene fits perfect with it all

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There will be trouble, and it will take down some of the good projects just like that safe.
But it'll pass, all new industries go through that stage. Doesn't make it any easier on anyone losing large stakes of their savings some day. It's why you have to diversify.

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But what If you start with little capital? Its diversifying still good?

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That's the advantage of this new world: Low transaction costs (let's ignore BTCs current state ;)
You can take $100 and divide them among... let's say 5 coins/tokens. Buying 5 different stocks would eat half that sum, exchanging coins willl not. Over time you can switch coins or expand your portfolio, all at a small cost.

Also, searching for something to diversify into, you'll automatically learn along the way, wether you invest or not. Can't go wrong with that ;)

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Now that you say it it makes more sense.

I started investing with a 220$ and now I am up to 950$
And all of it was from diversity and HODLing through tough times

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Good job then. Keep it up :)

Welcome to Steemit. If you have questions feel free to join our german chat channel https://steemit.chat/channel/deutsch

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Thanks, I'll have to check it out. Markdown in particular took me hours to get it to look like the original in word. Still haven't figured out how to turn images into links.

Congratulations @system-sengine!
Your post was mentioned in my hit parade in the following category:

  • Comments - Ranked 5 with 58 comments
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Cool, thanks :)

PMOD is a thing for me, too :). With many coins now especially, when I look at any of them now I am already thinking that the price is so damn high :D.

Welcome to Steemit, I'm following you so I'm hoping for some good quality content from you :).

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Thanks for the vote of confidence, I'll do my best to deliver :)

The "worst" coin in the current run, for me, was Ripple. It's one of the first coins I ever heard of and I wanted to get it because of the whole adoption by banks thing. It was at 3.x cents and I couldn't figure out where to get a wallet. Then to blew up. Then I learned how it's not all that decentralized.
Oh well, you cant kiss every girl ;)

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I jumped on that one when there was all that bank hipe. I put in some money in it expecting to lose it, or maybe making some small profit from it if it rises. And I wont even bother with a wallet for that thing :D.

And yes, as it's centralized, etc. I don't believe in this so I take it as a gamble with my money and will not "support the project more" with the very few bucks I have.

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Seems that, in this special case, I should have taken to gambling as well ;)

Actually greening the desert. Geoff Lawton wrote the book and has been doing just that. If you don't know about it, check it out.
If you do, please write us an article on your knowledge.

Greening the Desert - Geoff Lawton

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I've heard about him of course. Didn't think I'd write about that, but why not? For the time being, here's probably my favorite video on the subject:

Lessons of the Loess Plateau

Wo isn des Deutsch bitte? Ganz schön langer Text. Die Hälfte hab ich geschafft. Bilder konnte ich alle verarbeiten. Ich empfehle mich @flurgx

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Bisher tatsächlich nur ich. Dachte ich winke mal in die deutsche Community rein. Mea culpa. Werde das Tag dann nur noch bei zweisprachigen Texten verwenden, versprochen.

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Ja kein Stress Mann! Solange du Deutsch sprichst ist doch alles gut! Willkommen bei steemit und alles gute! Wir sehen uns :-D

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Jo, danke. Hab's nicht als Stressversuch aufgefasst ;)

Welcome dude, a nice intro piece.

Don't worry, you are not alone with the early missed opportunities with BTC and the like! I was busy overclocking my quad core and burn testing it to max
In 2008/9, only to play battlefield 2 🙈

Hope it goes better for us here, I got a good feeling this time!

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Better slightly late, than really late I guess. If it's 1994 in dotcom years, we're good ;)

welcome to Steemit. Thats a hell of an introduction =)

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Thanks. Took me way too many hours in re-writing and formatting so that's really nice to hear :)

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i can imagine that. here is another upvote for your efforts ;)

Not sure if consider the fuzzy feeling I got missing 100$ bitcoins when I first noticed them and thinking, fad. Turns out while I wasn't paying attention.... The rest is history. Glad to be here closer to the dawn then dusk of steemit. Freu mich schön zum treffen Sie. Great post

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Thank you.
Yes, we're barely past breakfast. Now we just need to chose the right table for brunch and not get lost on the way.

I do like your intro … nice one … future posts are been waited so hope for you the best in this new & challenging environment. I like writing/posting about several topics that call my attention, from travel, life to science and technology. Here are some of my last posts, that if you can, read them and leave some comments - it will be great.

https://steemit.com/life/@indepthstory/nice-island-beautiful-beach-lots-of-aquatic-sports-to-do-still-the-best-part-of-the-trip-was-been-in-family-all-together

https://steemit.com/steemit/@indepthstory/i-was-almost-convinced-but-what-happened-what-on-earth-is-going-on

https://steemit.com/life/@indepthstory/rio-de-janeiro-is-one-of-those-items-that-must-be-placed-in-the-bucket-list-and-one-day-definitively-visit-we-did

Best of good luck in the STEEMIT arena …. have given you my upvote tick for the welcome, and of course hope you will tick on the follow link .!!

Txs. & Rgds.

@indepthstory

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Thank you. I'll check them out, though that will have to wait untill tommorow, considering it's 10.30 now. You will hear from me :)

Hello! good to see you, count on you ;)

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Why, thank you :)

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Everyone talk about you, so you should do great things ;)

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Ah... thanks. Who exactly is everyone?

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There are pleny posts that's quotes and link to your first post. Im try to not by troll ;)

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No worries, didnt take it as trolling, just didnt know what you meant. Can I check posts that quote me somewhere?

Welcome to Steemit @system-sengine, "If you like what you read or got interested in what you might see in the future, hit that follow button and sail along toward those golden shores. I will do my best to make it worth your while." I hope you'll keep your promise.

Therefore I upvoted, resteemed and followed.

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Thanks for the trust, I will do my best :)

Welcome to Steemit! Awesome story, I have problems with procrastination too :D

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Don't we all ;) Great in numbers those takers of our attention are. Learn to control them we must.

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Yep, just need to build up that momentum :)

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That is true for so many things...

Welcome. You are still here in the early stages.

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Thank you. I guess it depends on perspective. Considering I don't know anyone personally, who owns cryptocurrencies, there is indeed a long way to go.

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Just work on earning Steem and slowly diversify into other cryptos to spread the risk. If I was starting out again that is what I would do. You not only earn cryptocurrency but there are a lot of people here who are very knowledgeable about such things that you can pick up the details from.

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I've already done the diversifying actually. But I'm still figuring things out so it's more of a picks and shovels aproach.

Welcome to Steemit!! I Wish you a wonderful Steemit Adventure!!!

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Thank you. I'm having a good time so far. :)

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Welcome! Following u

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Thanks :)

It's cool that you're interested in immortality/life extension/the end of aging. It's a fascinating subject and one I have a keen interest in....and so does my brother. He is so interested in it, in fact, that he and his best friend since high school both got their Ph.D.s together last year, both in Molecular Biology with specializations in longevity research. They have now started a biotech start-up and a non-profit to study longevity and how to achieve it. They're on the cutting edge of the science, and because of them, I'm able to be up on the latest things, too. I expect one or both of them to win a Nobel Prize one day.

Looking forward to reading more of your posts!

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I blame Robert Heinlein! :D
How can one not be interested in that? Or outright oppose it? Completely beyond me... Intriguing fact about your brother. Do you write about their research/that subject in general?

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Sometimes, if it's something I understand and can put in layman's terms. A lot of what they do is super scientific and incredibly technical. I've got a Master's degree, but it's in the social sciences. My brother's Ph.D. is in the REAL sciences. He believes, based on his studies, that human immortality is theoretically possible. In fact, he says there's no real biological reason we can't achieve it. The challenge is to find ways to defeat all the things that play into aging and disease and stop them. Once we stop those, which can also be done, but apparently we're not quite there yet, then immortality, or at least extreme longevity, should become the norm.

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Great, I'm looking forward to that :)

Hallo und herzlich willkommen. Ich bin auch eine Russlanddeutsche. Cool dich hier zu treffen.

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Moin. Ja, die Welt ist eben verdammt klein ;)

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wie recht du hast. besonders im www. :)

Welcome to Steemit! this is the most amazing platform you will ever discover!!! If you ever get hungry, dont go to my page :P Alla x

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Thanks for the warning, I'll make sure to be sated ;)

This post has been ranked within the top 80 most undervalued posts in the second half of Jun 11. We estimate that this post is undervalued by $27.73 as compared to a scenario in which every voter had an equal say.

See the full rankings and details in The Daily Tribune: Jun 11 - Part II. You can also read about some of our methodology, data analysis and technical details in our initial post.

If you are the author and would prefer not to receive these comments, simply reply "Stop" to this comment.

Nice to have you on board! Follow me at https://steemit.com/@bitgeek

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Thanks, will check it out.

Welcome @system-sengine! I'm guilty of being an "information junkie" as well. 😜

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Yea, sometimes one simply cannot help it :D

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Keep up the good work! ;)
)

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hehe:)

Welcome to the steemit platform. Looking forward to interesting contents from you for the betterment of the steemit community.
Please feel free to check out @GLOBALFOODBOOK

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Thanks, I'll have a look.

@sistema de sengine excelente post, te dejo mi voto y te sigo!

https://steemit.com/@jhelbich

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Perdón, pero no hablo español. Glad you liked it though :)

Welcome! Good luck! 😃

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Thank you :)

That is a great post - you are a great addition to Steemit - just a quick one the #deutsch tag is usually for German language posts (or at least that include some bit of German) - however upvoted - hope you enjoy Steemit!

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No worries at all - you did a fantastic start and one can not know everything here in this community. Well done

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Welcome to Steemit! You'll find an amazing community here.
This is such an informative post! Thank you!

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Thanks for the welcome!

I started following you to know you better. Feel free to connect with me @lulita 😀

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Thanks :) I will check in.

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Thank you

Willkommen :) viel Spaß in diesem wundervollen Netzwerk ;)

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Vielen Dank :)