Thursday, July 19, 2007

Grandma in the 21st century

I live in a neighborhood of homes that were built in the early 1970's,.. small ranch houses. Homes built during a fuel crisis, energy efficient, but tiny. Kids played outside. A lot.
My neighborhood is quiet now as most of the residents are either small families or couples with grown children.

When my children were growing up in the 80's and 90's, the neighborhood was different. The yards teemed with kids, all-ages,, all-sizes. Anytime of the day, the kids could step outside of the door and find someone to play with.

There was always a lot of noise, ball games, and secret plans being concocted. Back then, come suppertime, it was hard to locate my three kids. One might be here, the other might be there, and another might be up a tree. ..........Do I have to tell you which one that was?

At supper time, bed time, or just anytime I needed the kids home, I would have to walk and walk until I rounded them up.

Dennis, my neighbor, and the father of two boys, had another method. He would stand in his yard, put his fingers to his mouth and whistle. This was a loud piecing whistle, and his sons would come running. It seemed to work great for him, so I decided to give it a try. Unfortunately, then, as now, I cannot make a sound of any kind when I try to whistle. I can't whistle a tune, or even a tweet.

So, I found this great, old, brass whistle at a rummage sale, and decided to use that instead.

Today's parents may think this sounds as if I was treating my kids like animals but, it was efficient and saved frustration. For me and them!

Why am I telling you all this? Well, my daughter Megan informed me that she has purchased a cell phone for her niece, Emili. That's right, six-year old Emili has a cell phone!

I reacted in typical knee jerk/old lady/grandma/crabby fashion with, "What the heck does a six year old need that for? Parents are too indulgent these days,... and kids are growing up too fast. She's only six...etc. on and on....." It was then when Megan reminded me of the whistle, I had completely forgotten about it. Lauren and Megan and Emili live in a small town now, and Emili has more freedom than her past years. She is in a safe neighborhood and can play freely, as my kids did back in the late part of the century past.........
Since it is a new age,,,,,,the phone seems not so bad,,,,,,,,, I like the whistle better, but I am just the Grandma, times change.


Anonymous said...

Wow I actually was written about in your blog!!! You are a Grandma with an I-pod, who blogs.... you are not that far off from the changes in society

Anonymous said...

I KNOW...Nanna's cell even has a GPS so we can track her whereabouts...
hope you're feeling better...

David said...

Hi, I was reading your blog, and suddenly I remembered a quote from the book whose title is "Memoirs of a Geisha" such a quotation says "that sometimes the only way to bear the nowadays' struggles is to remember ourselves about the happines of the past."
What you depict in your blog is a contant reality, when time goes by everything changes around.

P.S. I'm David, a friend of Lauren and Megan, from Chicago.