Sometimes, I wish I lived in a simpler, quieter time. Like that of Thoreau. Of course, I romanticize this era, where he could discuss & debate politics, life, right & wrong with his good friend Emerson.
I think of a time when the day to day wasn’t complicated. People knew their neighbors, shop keepers & relatives & friends lived close by.
You didn’t have to go to the mall on Sundays. Instead you might take a walk around the pond, visit a neighbor or friend, or go to your relatives to spend the day visiting & then join them for dinner.
But as lovely as all that sounds, knowing what I know and having so many of the creature comforts we do & easy accessibility to media, people & information would be tough to give up.
Imagine a world with no email, texting, hearing the loud person in the restaurant next to you on their phone & including you in on the conversation, like you care. Like they’re even cognizant that you exist. They’re not.
Imagine no computers & no google, Snopes, Politico or Politifact.com or the NY Times not accessible on-line. Imagine no YouTube, CNN, HBO, iPhones, iPads . Hard, isn’t it ?
But none of that stuff calms me or stills my mind. I find no peace in cacophony, rudeness, sharing my lunch with a one sided conversation from the next table or trying to have a conversation with someone while they’re texting. Is the other person really there ? I find it so impersonal, we remove ourselves from our current company, event or, conversation or dinner. We live in a world that creates isolation & often loneliness as much as closing the gap on it. I see social graces, manners & being present with someone bring thrown aside.
So visualize a small house near a village with a pond close by. Lots of looming trees for privacy & shade in summer, relatives & friends close by. Nature is right outside your door. There are no blaring tv’s or radios to drown out the symphonic sound of quiet. No bright lights to mute the sky & rob of it of all those stars.
Okay, so I’d have to give up sone comforts like central heat & a:c, waiting for the mail, the slow kind for any communication beyond the village, no immediate response through text, email or phone. No way to waste my mind in front of 300 channels to choose from & reality tv. It would be candle light & books & people who knew me. No one would be invisible.
I wish I could incorporate the best of both, but I can’t. And when I think about it & if I was really forced to choose, I’d take Thoreau’s world every day. Besides, I would never know what I missing.
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First and foremost, I'm a baby boomer and damn proud of it. The ones reading this post survived. Some didn't..We are the generation that crashed through barriers, broke through the norm and made our own rules. We paved the way for others to follow their bliss. One of the largest breakthroughs was probably equal rights and opportunities for women. Thank you Gloria Steinem and Betty Friedan. We burned our bras, well, most of us did. We marched against politics we didn't believe in, staged protests not knowing we could easily be silenced by a bullet, experimented with drugs, meditation and guru's. We traveled with backpacks across the country and throughout the world..We had a voice. We had a choice. We had a mission. We had freedom and we were united. I am a writer, traveler, explorer, observer and participant in life. I am part of the expansion of baby boomers who still believe in the original message of peace and love. Take this journey.with me. Who knows where it will take us next ?
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