Gadgets great but don’t beat hugs

I came home from work the other day to find my husband sitting all smug and smiling at the kitchen table.

I came home from work the other day to find my husband sitting all smug and smiling at the kitchen table.

I immediately surmised he had had a really good day, while I had been out in the work force doing work force like things – which inevitably result in exhaustion and overall grouchiness.

And so, because of both of the above reasons, I glared at him.

“I saw Ben and Dylan today,” he said smugly.

Being a working grandma means time spent with the grandchildren is a limited commodity and I became instantly jealous as well as grouchy.

“Lucky you,” I said, meaning it.

“It’s this Facetime thing,” he said proudly, showing me how he could make the little boys’ faces appear on his iPad just like they were really there. And he could talk to them and they could talk back, at least they could, except at least one of them has a vocabulary pretty much limited to ‘hi and bye’

But, so what? The words don’t matter, anyway. Just seeing his little face and watching him smack a ball with his miniature hockey stick is worth a million words.

And, I have now discovered seeing him, or any of the little munchkins on face time, evokes a warm, mushy, happy feeling. A hot chocolate with marshmallows or eating chocolate chip cookies with extra chocolate chips kind of feeling, like the world is really a good, nice place, and, for a brief, magical moment at least, there are no bad guys out there.

I discovered Facetime only a couple days ago. Yesterday, my young reporter friend told me my cell phone, as well, has multiple uses that I should tap into.

It can take pictures. It can record people’s voices.

It can send and receive emails.

“You just need the right app’”, he said. “No kidding,” I replied, feeling about 200 years old.

I already know some stuff my cell phone can do.

It can shatter the sounds of serious negotiations and important quotable quotes in meetings bringing unwelcome attention to reporters such as myself who would do better to be neither seen nor heard when it rings unexpectedly.

It can act as an alarm clock piercing the veil of fluffy, happy dreams where all food is calorie free and butterflies and music and flowers are all over the place.

It can mysteriously disappear in purses and under car seats especially when the ringer is on silent and it is dark and cold out and your keys are missing as well.

But, overall, cell phones are part of a technology which affords us many opportunities to expand our horizons and grow and learn and become savvy in ways we never imagined.

And I am grateful to be privy to the learning curve to make this happen.

But, sometimes, in spite of myself I find myself slipping back to the old ways and the old days when a phone was a phone, and a letter in the mailbox was an unexpected and delightful gift and when you wanted to see a special someone, you had to get in your car and drive there.

And, of course, get a hug when you arrived.

That’s the best part.