The gadgets ranged from our eight year old son's latest and greatest hand held game, to our three year old little girl's pink princess play computer. It brought back a memory of a conversation that I once had with my Grandma.
She and I were sitting together, watching one of her favorite evening news shows. It was many years ago and the segment was about the upcoming technology that might possibly allow people to "hold the whole world" in the palm of their hands. It went on to describe how scientists felt that in the not too distant future, everyone would have a type of phone that would be able to "connect us to the world." I could hardly believe what they were reporting and said to Gram, "Whoa! How COOL would that be? Do you think it could ever really happen?!" Her response surprised me. "I'm sure that one day it will be possible...I'm just not so sure that it would be good, though. There's something to be said about human contact, Honey - and we don't want to get too far away from that."
Being a typical granddaughter, I figured that she was just from "a different generation," so I passed it off. Now though, I see what she meant. We literally have almost anything our minds could imagine at our fingertips, but what we seem to sometimes fall short of, is paying attention to what's right in front of our faces.
I'm guilty of it myself...I can sit on the computer for who knows how long, but I can't begin to remember the last time I've written an actual letter. What was once a phone call, is now a text. The irony of it all, is that as connected as today's technology has made the world, it seems to provide almost a disconnect in return.
As the kids groaned while they shut their games off, I had a new found mission. With only a few weeks left of summer vacation, we were going to spend time together and play, with OUT the electronics.
My parents were visiting so we decided that it would be a good time to begin working on the "clubhouse" we had been talking about. It's nothing major, but my husband and Dad began to build a fort underneath the staircase of our basement. The kids helped in the process.
It was the most fun they've had this summer. Our basement is completely unfinished and it's not much to look at, but you would never know it by the amount of laughter and playing that comes from it now.
To hear them giggle in their clubhouse brings back memories of when childhood was simpler, without all of the latest technology. Good old fashioned fun with nothing but each other. That, I believe, is the original "Play Station." It's been almost a year since Gram has past. She was 95 years old and we miss her constantly. I can't help but think that she would be happy though. In this day of modern technology, her words of wisdom still ring true. It really is good to get back to the basics and simply be together. It doesn't get much better than that.