18 October 2011

Travel these Days...

Since my rather impromptu trip is coming up soon, I am in full planning mode. But, as always when planning, I start thinking back to when I first started traveling.

I am trying to brush up a bit on my Spanish, and so am listening to a podcast (hosted by some Scots; sometimes the English is harder to understand than the Spanish!). The topic was introducing and talking about your family. Yes, pretty basic, but it's been a while and everything is a good reminder.

At any rate, I started to think about my first trip off to Spain. I was going for a while, and I wanted to have some pictures with me of my friends and family back home. I thought this would be a good way to keep them with me, but also to show the people I would meet who I was back home, and allow them to put faces with the names that I may mention in conversation. Because space was limited in my bag, I cut out pictures and made a collage. Then, I photocopied that collage in color so it was small and I could carry it easily, or hang it on my wall.

(Where I did this color copying I am not sure -- Mom's work? Kinko's? -- as color copiers were not as common back in 1998 as they are now. )

Likewise, when I wanted my parents to know who I was meeting, what I was seeing, etc., I had to go to El Corte Ingles, get my film developed (gasp, FILM. DEVELOP.), put the photos in an envelope with a stamp, and send them on their way in hopes they would arrive in a week or two. This was the only way they could share my experience with me.

It just dawned on me today how I've taken advantage of how much this has changed. Now, I generally have my phone with me, where I can show new friends pictures and even videos from home. I can post things to Facebook (or, for my mom, email) to allow people to share in my trip...whether they like it or not. And, this is all done instantly, no need for them to hang tight for a few weeks until the letter gets there.

And I love it. I love the way I can share, if I want, or find out what my friends are up to and be jealous. While I do miss the ritual of the past, I really do love the way things have changed.

(see...I'm not that old. Kids, feel free to play on my lawn.)

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