Sunday 17 February 2013

Family and Friends

I got a call today from my brother Steve via Skype. There was nothing important about the call; we just talked about the weather and work. Like I say nothing important. We laughed and I tried to give him instructions on some aspects of how a computer works. It is a slow process and I get frustrated at his not knowing some of the very basic things that I feel he should know. I forget that I have had computers for the better part of thirty years and the learning curve has been slow and steady. It all takes time I suppose.

I was thinking after the call that it was nice to be able to see someone when you are talking to them and how nice it would have been to have had this technology when Louise and I moved to Alberta all those years ago.

I can remember the tearful farewells as we left Ontario to make our new lives in the west. We promised to phone when we could and that we would write every week. When we first got to Alberta we were far too busy trying to find jobs and a decent place to live. The housing market was very short of rental properties at the time and it took weeks to finally find a place. I should have said it took weeks and a barrel of tears. For the first few months out here we spent about $400 per month on phone calls and ‘although I don’t really remember I would bet that it was no where near that amount in stamps.

There came a time when we realized that we were making all of the calls and we had to stop them for fear of bankruptcy. I suppose that was the moment when we started to drift apart from our friends and family. We were separated by a couple of thousand miles and the communications had tapered off to a trickle. They had their lives to lead and we had our lives to lead. Of course there was love still, but the day to day managing of life kept us and them busy. It got to a point there that the only real communication was a letter, booklet of office jokes and a Christmas card every year. We would tell each other how our lives had progressed since the last December and I would promise to be better at writing in the coming year. I never did get any good at writing letters.

Luckily, the internet and email came along before we had forgotten each other completely. Shortly after that came all of the other wonderful and miraculous ways of keeping in touch with each other. Now, I can talk to my brother face to face and either laugh or get pissed off with him. It doesn’t make a difference, we are still talking. I am in contact with my friends on a daily basis through facebook and email. Some friends that I didn’t talk to very much when I lived near them are now my favourite correspondents. Yes, I will write now and fairly often. I write a blog every day and although what is said in the blog must be taken with a grain of sand, this is for the most part…my life.

I look forward to an old age where I am connected with friends and family near and far; electronically at least. 

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