I have a love/hate relationship with technology.
I love when it works and I have the time to use it. That means the wifi is strong and I’m able to blog, surf, and Netflix with no interruptions or buffering. It means having the time to enjoy it outside of daily distractions like working and house chores. As a tree hugger, I appreciate saving paper and being able to read the news online. Social media keeps me better connected with family and friends.
I’m also a cheap date.
In the early 80s my brother moved to California after college graduation. I remember calling long distance and being amazed at how effortless it was to have a conversation across 2,400 miles. Of course, in those days you had to dial a 1 + the area code + the phone number, but the extra “work” was worth it. Ma Bell coined the phrase “It’s the next best thing to being there” and she was right.
Technology still impresses me today in even greater measure.
Those of us born before computers remember things that younger folks never experienced (now I’m really dating myself.) Black & white televisions and having to get up to change one of three channels. Rotary phones connected to a wall that only allowed us to move the length of the chord. Or, how about manual typewriters and those little squares of white correction paper to “erase” typos?
I remember standing on the beach in Florida in July of 1969 watching the launch of the first manned mission to the moon. I was eight years old and absolutely amazed. My son and his family live in Cocoa Beach and I still get goosebumps watching launches from nearby Cape Canaveral.
The technological revolution that we’re living in has produced many incredible changes over the last 50+ years. The fact that we carry a pocket computer with 100,00 times the processing power of the computer that put men on the moon in 1969.
The ability to FaceTime, Zoom, or HouseParty with family and friends is a true luxury during this pandemic. Of course, so is just about everything we do. Think how many times you use technology in a day. Computers, phones, televisions, cars, the Keurig, the Sonic Care, the Roomba…the list is long!
Of course, everything in moderation. Technology shouldn’t prevent us from communicating the old-fashioned way. And it shouldn’t rob us of quality time spent doing other activities that make life wonderful, too.
But, like so many other things, we tend to take it for granted. Until we don’t have it.
I was house-sitting for my son in 2017 when Hurricane Irma roared through Florida. I was without electricity for five days and water for three. September in Florida gets really hot. I didn’t realize how hot without AC. Thank God for the in ground pool. While not drinkable, it made bathing and flushing the toilet possible. Talk about being grateful!
Anyway, it was a good reminder of all the comforts and luxuries that we enjoy. Something we should be aware of every day. Because we must first be aware of our blessings if we’re going to be grateful for them.
So, today I’m thankful for technology. What are you thankful for?