I never wanted to become THAT stereotypical stodgy old man. Two things seem to help me with that effort: travel and technology. One is fun and the other is a constant frustration—I love full-time travel but find rapidly changing technology challenging. You have to appreciate that my first telephone was a rotary dial phone (with a party-line), I was a kid when Russia launched the first satellite (Sputnik 1) into space, I saw Elvis Presley on the Ed Sullivan show and I used a Slide-rule in high school for math problems (no computers or calculators).
I was born in 1947 so you can do the math (or can you?). Just my little dig at technology—many young folks today have a difficult time doing math without a computer or calculator. I have seen a lot and experienced a lot but I can still be surprised and AMAZED. Travel amazes me and technology very often surprises me. Everything is a computer now. I recently bought a new travel watch (a Casio Pro Trek) and it’s like something out of Buck Rogers’ world. With the flip of my wrist and a quick button-push I can see: world time, compass heading, barometric pressure, altitude and temperature.
Because everything is a computer everything has to be initially programmed: from mobile phones, to watches, kitchen appliances and even new cameras. While I’m back in the USA for a short visit (after five years) I’ve refreshed my camera gear (and I’ve written about it a lot lately on this blog—see recent posts). New digital cameras are a far cry from the old film rangefinder cameras of yesteryear. I’ve struggled to program and learn my new Canon EOS 5 Mark IV for two or three days (my old brain works slow). I finally completed the task yesterday after much frustration but now feel a deep sense of satisfaction. Learning something new isn’t always an easy enterprise but it does leave you with a sense of accomplishment—and dare I say it—it helps to keep you young.