We have now just about completed building our “homestead” in Australia. It has been a long process, some of it done from far away, and a lot of it undertaken on site. We are transitioning from the building stage to the improvement and development of the property stage.
Our property is about a half hour outside a regional country town. We are not isolated, but we are around a half mile from our nearest neighbors. We feel we are generally accepted by the locals, who are very welcoming, if somewhat perplexed by us. The folks around here are conservative and independent by nature. A number of them are retired, and a number had small businesses, so we have common ground. We gather regularly for drinks, meals, and dinner out.
Our homestead is quite substantial for the area. It is a source of some head scratching for the locals. We built the home to meet our desires, which far exceed our needs, and it is in no way similar to the farmhouses that are prevalent. Many of the locals do not understand why we have a theater room or or pool or why we landscaped substantially around the home – after all, it is, or should be, a farm, and anything not associated with farming is, well, wasteful. They vastly prefer function to form. We wanted both.
The Communications Revolution and its’ Long Term Consequences
Remember, way back when, when a family would gather in the living room on a Sunday evening, supper plates in hand and listen and laugh at Jack Benny on the radio? Or what a telegram was? Or when the old fashioned rotary telephone came off the wall and turned into a box with buttons on it?
Remember when your kids would come running up and ask you what this word meant sounding it out phonetically as they went? How about that day when your child came home from school proudly displaying a sheet of paper – lined, of course – with his or her name first printed on one line and then – wonders of wonders – written in cursive on the next line?
Remember when there were block parties (both urban and rural) where once a month or so, a big pot luck would be held in someone’s back yard or at a local park or lake?
There are so, so many things I remember that have vanished with the advent of communication technology from simple Morse Code over a wire through radio to black and white TV through smartphones, IPads, Desktops, Internet and all the other highly isolating faux connecting technology that flows into the market every second of every day .
There are huge number of both positive and negative psychological and physical effects of these technological advances of which almost all are aware of the positives but very few are even conscious of the negative aspects – until it’s forced in front of them by one experience or another.
Me? I’m all for technological change. What I hate is having it thrust down my throat whether I want it or not. I write with a pencil and paper a lot – to my wife’s sometime confusion because I was never good at handwriting (or spelling) at any level in school…I’m an engineer/scientist and they fall in the same group as doctors in the penmanship area!
Is Trump attacking Bill Clinton fair game given that Captain Pant Suit has said that she will put him “in charge” of the economy?