I’ve been transported back to my teenage years.
This week Mother Nature handed me a gift in the form of one almighty cyclone dubbed Debbie. For many on the east coast of Australia, we have been subjected to days of floods, no power, no internet, no phones. Lives have been lost and families devastated by the sheer force that has come from above. With little warning, Debbie was born and then grew and grew and grew until she found her legs to then take her sweet time moving uninvited into the lives of so many. We will long remember Debbie.
But here’s the thing. Take away the rising waters and the gale force winds and as I told my children, this is how life was when I was a teenager. As a teenager, the closest phone I had was the one at the next door neighbours house, or the red box up the corner. A mobile phone was one that came off the wall and was hurled at someone midst argument. No one had uttered the words Internet or Wi-Fi in those days. But yes we did have power….I’m not that old as I reassured the kids.
In 2017 modern technology, has been a God send and saviour in this natural disaster. It became a vital element to ensure families stay connected, emergency services and rescue workers co-ordinated vital measures from afar needed to reduce the further impact felt by so many.
For me the positives of the last few days were being transported back to my teenage years where we did not need a natural disaster to force us to realise if we wanted to communicate, we had to do it verbally. It was an era when we lifted our heads and made eye contact with one another. The net we played on was stretched across a tennis court, ping pong table or cricket fields. Play was outside our home more so than in. It was an era of my teenage years when legs where the quickest way to catch up with a friend and to then hang out, we headed for the rumpus room or bedroom, not the virtual room.
It was a time from my past that would be totally alien to my children and unless I tell them about my experiences, they would never know.
So, what were your teenage years like? Have you shared those times with that young person in your life now?
The experiences of our past become our ‘Button Jar Stories’. If we don’t tell them and don’t preserve them, then just like Debbie they will certainly leave an impact on our life, but will eventually disappear from memory and become forgotten. Tell yours to those you love.