My iMac is now at home....
After much deliberation I decided last week to upgrade my computer. It was a decision not taken lightly, because a computer, used for many purposes during the trials and tribulations of daily life becomes a close ally, and most of the time, a friend. Mine had been my daily companion for over five years, and we knew each other's foibles. However, with the passage of time, and I have no doubt some unrealistic expectations on my part about its performance after such a relatively long time in "computer life", it became obvious that, like me, it was slowing down and needed a gentle nudge into semi-retirement. And so it is confined to the rather boring process of accounts and bill paying and mind-numbing record keeping, rather than the excitement of new voyages towards beckoning horizons in the world of the internet.
I took the leap of faith to an iMac from a PC, and despite my incredulity about it's beauty and accessibility, I felt some level of "computer guilt" about becoming a good friend with it so quickly in our acquaintance. That emotion lasted only 48 hours, and my new friend is encouraging me to explore with "her" the many and varied experiences of the Mac universe. Not least the wonderful world of photographs with iPhoto...and what fun I am having playing with the photos of my beautiful new grandson.
The world of modern manners in this age of the internet has also been intriguing me as a result of experiences in the last couple of months or so. When my daughter was born 31 years ago it was normal to place an announcement in the daily newspaper about the birth of a child. Today, it is usual to place an announcement on Facebook or another favoured social media site and to look forward to the comments of friends and acquaintances. And I have found that the "Grandmother's Brag Book" of my mother's era has now also been usurped by social media. I have a Facebook page with just a handful of friends, well 50 or so, scattered around the world who seem to enjoy my regular "Harry Updates".
Harry's tiny feet
While I was recently in Sydney I read an interesting article about the social norms for mourning in this day and age. Text messaging is apparently the preferred medium of Gen Y when it comes to commiseration with friends and family over the loss of a loved one. And the posting of a Facebook or Instagram page with photos and opportunity for comment about the deceased is also quite normal. None of this information surprised me as I am regularly asked how to write a commiseration note, in the "old fashioned way", by those who rarely encounter an opportunity to put pen to paper.
Apparently there are "mourning etiquette" websites designed specifically for the 20 somethings who do not realise that taking "selfies" at funerals is inappropriate, and while acknowledging that young people are eager for virtual connection, they do point out that consideration for the bereaved at the funeral should be paramount. I would have thought that this is common sense but perhaps this type of common sense, in this époque of virtual, instantaneous reality, is only achieved with age and wisdom.