Sunday, May 20, 2007


With encouragement from the Australian part of the family (though those in Holland will be glad as well) I finally downloaded the free skype software, enabling us to talk to family in far away lands for free. A few hours after I started the account, my computer started ringing! I "answered" the light blue ringing bubble on the screen and suddenly I was whisked into an episode of "The Jetsons". My computer was talking to me, in a familiar Australian accent. My mac laptop had come alive and had taken on Naomi's persona! It was surreal and freaky and I was hysterical.

When I finally stopped laughing and Naomi hooked up her camera so that I could see her (soo wonderful) I saw how cool this could be. We got to see her growing-with-child belly. sigh. That was something! We got to see Kenneth's new rock star haircut. Nicolas and the kids saw K. & N.'s Sydney apartment for the first time, including their beautiful view of the Bay from their terrace. We caught up on their new business venture, they got to hear the kids' voices (though mostly I was heading off Jesse from his attempts to have his stuffed dog Rufus kiss Naomi so much, in case Rufus inadvertently disconnected the skype). We shared Red Sox updates and reconnected with the pandas (Louisafini and Pandolfini who need an entire blog entry to themselves some time soon). It was all good. But that was because I could see them and they couldn't yet see me. I have to get a cord to connect our video camera to the computer.

I think that connecting in person is what it's really all about. We connected with some friends here today on their way to Vidalia. Sharing good food and laughs and the outdoors is so fine. If you can't have that, then connecting by voice is good; though I sometimes prefer writing. But this video phone phenomenon...I feel like the first phone generation must have felt. I think of Pa Ingalls saying "these times we're living in are going too fast, we have trains where we used to just have wagons, and telegrams, and kerosene lamps.... it's too much too quick." (I'm seriously paraphrasing Laura Ingalls Wilder) Am I afraid of even more technology? Been reading too many "Little House" books lately?

I want to see the new nephews (one niece?) when they are born. I loved seeing my brother after not having seen him for a year. It was so good to see Naomi looking so pregnant. But I don't want the computer to ring at any old time and have to literally FACE someone while talking. You feel like you're sitting in front of the person, but you're not! What is my problem? I'll stop wondering until I actually have a camera on me for the first time...if anyone even calls me again after this babbling.

OK, I am not stopping. My mac ibook is the way I connect to the world outside of my little town. I love being able to connect to such a fabulously diverse bunch of people, to reach out instantly to so many friends, family and yet-to-be-made friends, so easily. Skype just makes that possibility even bigger. It's a little wierd. But I can face it. Bring it on.

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