I feel quite proud that I could set it up [the radio] without trouble . . .
Ina Dobson to Vance on setting up the radio, December 1935
I didn’t know Grandma Ina well. She passed away when I was seven without the two of us ever having a good conversation. Therefore, I seek for her in her writings, and sometimes I find affinity through the smallest statement -- like the one above.
From time to time Mike and I had discussed advancing our technological experience. We weren’t really interested, we agreed. It had gone far enough, we averred. We didn’t even like what we saw of technological advances and what would we do with these devices anyway? Furthermore, we just plain didn’t want to take it on, and why should we? Still, we would conclude, what was going to happen to us if we didn’t at least try to keep up?
Then Mike decided, with seeming suddenness, that he wanted an iPhone. Now – Mike and I are barely members of the cell phone generation. We were raised when the telephone meant a place, not a person, and we haven’t coped well with the transition. I will leave my cell on the coffee table when I go to the store. And if it does make it into my purse, it’s liable to stay there for two weeks. It’s mostly okay because it mostly never rings. “Oh look at that – I missed a call two weeks ago,” I’ll say when I finally think to check.
Anyway, during our pre-Christmas celebration, Hallie helped Mike order his iPhone. They said it might be delivered Christmas Eve, and that meant leaving the Christmas tree at the farmhouse and dashing back to town, but at least we were rewarded for that. FedEx delivered the iPhone that afternoon.
Yes, I admit it. I was slightly irked that Mike was getting this great thing at Christmastime even though the iPhone really wasn’t his Christmas gift. Or was it? And anyway, I reminded myself, I have plenty – everything I want and more – but it still felt like Mike got a great present and I didn’t. “Well, I’m not looking forward to it,” Mike responded when this spoiled girl whined. “It’s going to be a lot of frustration setting it up.” And indeed he had some frustration but mainly because he had to work through issues related to keeping his old cell number. Once those were resolved, I observed that he was indeed having fun. He loves his new toy – er, phone.
“So,” I found myself saying, “I think I should have an iPad.” And Mike readily concurred. Perhaps he realized he was not in a position to argue. This time we gave daughter Hallie a break and approached son Yancey, who took care of ordering on my behalf. (I'm really not so helpless that I couldn't buy it myself, but Yancey works for Apple.)
My iPad came last week, and I quickly connected and started visiting the app store. I bought a book for my digital library. Then I subscribed to a quilting magazine that promised me a free digital edition. I bookmarked some favorite websites. Every day I work with my iPad. Probably the best app I’ve found so far is the recipe program. Finally, the iPad seems to be the right scenario for the digitization of my recipes. Eventually I’ll eliminate that envelope I’ve been carrying back and forth to the farm for years. And it’s so convenient to set the iPad on the kitchen counter and read the recipe from the screen.
And so, I say with Ina, “I feel quite proud that I could set it up without trouble.” I know exactly how she felt – the satisfaction of having stepped into today’s world and actually coped.
“Tune in and hear Byrd talk,” said Ina.
“Have you seen this app?” says Kathy. KW