Tuesday, 25 June 2013

WordPress Daily Prompt: 21st Century Citizen

Do you belong in this day and age? Do you feel comfortable being a citizen of the 21st-century? If you do, explain why — and if you don’t, when in human history would you rather be?

Photographers, artists, poets: show us MODERN.

New footbridge by the Röti bridge in Solothurn

Our town of Solothurn was built by the Romans around 15-25 AD. Over the years it has grown and been modernised. The photo shows our new Röti bridge, built in 2007 replacing the old bridge. An example of modern engineering. The old bridge was kept parallel until the new was built and then the old demolished.

I did actually spare a few thoughts on my situation according to the title of the blog and decided that I am quite happy where I am today. I have a washing up machine and a washing machine. No more washing up by hand and looking for a victim to help to dry everything and put it away and clothes are clean with no problem. No more scrubbing by hand. We have a vacuum cleaner so the carpets do not have to be beaten and floors do not have to be scrubbed. In other words I live a carefree life of luxury in my own four walls.

I have time to cultivate my hobbies in between. Of course I had to wait until I was retired to be able to take full advantage of the hobbies.

I would have loved to live in a London in the mid nineteenth century: horse drawn carriages, no cars, and the original London landmarks. It was the age of discovery and industrialisation. To be a witness of it all would have been a wonderful experience. I would have loved to have lived in Rochester or Chatham at the time of Charles Dickens. His books tell such stories of life at the time; living on the marshes towards the estuary of the River Thames. This would be where and when I could change my comfortable living for something in the past.

 However, everything has its disadvantages. There would be no comfortable clothing such as t-shirts and blue jeans and comfortable shoes. I enjoy my retired life, dressing casually. I would not be happy with a long dress, and the strange shoes of the day. I often wonder how it was all kept clean and washed. Basically we are spoilt with our modern day life. We live in a disinfected world. The horror of seeing a spider or mouse in the house almost no longer exists today. We have our methods of keeping this under control. It was just part of life one hundred years ago.

Above all there was no computer. I just do not think that life without the Bill Gates invention would be my thing. It is all very well getting nostalgic, thinking of the good old days, but if there was something you wanted to know, you had no way of checking it with a quick look in Wikipedia or whatever. A letter was written (a letter – what is that?). The letter was transported by coach, later perhaps by train and eventually by plane. Today sit at the computer, type a message and send it by e-mail.

Facebook did not exist. How many of you out there could live without Facebook? I have often asked myself this question. I belong, but today just on the edge. I play a couple of brainless games, to pass time, but that is all. I have contact to a couple of authors I like reading (not direct just in a group) and even my little village in Switzerland has a page.

This week I seriously thought about leaving the whole social circle, but I am too comfortable. I have about 800 colleagues in facebook. Do I know them? About 10% who are family and close friends; people I really know have touched in real life and heard them speak. The rest are just sort of clutter you collect on the way, be it friend of a friend of a friend that you once played a game with, building a farm or restaurant. I would have left, were it not for the 10% of real people. It is free, costs me nothing, so why leave. It is also a platform to crosspost my blogs. You never know who might read them? Thus I am still in facebook.

I will remain in the 21st century. I quite like it. 


  1. I think I have a foot firmly planted on either side of the line. I would be lost with my computer and access to the internet, but I have absolutely no interest in Facebook. I have a mobile phone and carry it wherever I go, but I do not feel the need for an i-phone or android, I only use it for SMS messages and the occasional phone call. I love having a widescreen TV and DVD/Blu-ray, but have no particular desire for a tablet where I can watch movies everywhere. Probably the one piece of tech I have no time for is the e-reader or Kindle, whatever they are called. I still prefer a good old-fashioned paperback :-))

    1. Facebook is ok if you know how to use it. A lot of it seems to be frustrated people giving out frustrated comments, but I use it for my blog crossposting and keeping up with the family in far flung places. I have an iPhone and iPad and would not want to miss them. Especially the iPad, as it means I spend a lot less time on the computer, just write my blogs on the computer. The rest I see regularly on the iPad and I can also make my comments on the iPad (this comment is on the real computer). Also Mr. Swiss and I have many books, too many. We have no room for more. 6 bookcases full in the hobby room and a large book wall in the living room. We both have Kindle, although we read the books on our iPad app. At the moment I am reading a real book, but I have to put the lamp on later in the evening to see it properly. With the Kindle app I have a built in light and can read it while Mr. Swiss is watchinng the TV. I am completely in the clutches of modern technology and love it.

  2. There are times I long for a simpler life. Maybe a gypsy back in the day traveling here and there? It I'd luv to be back on the prairie helping with the farm and sewing quilts. We make time for what we have today. I've meant all summer to start a quilt with mom. I have yet to get started. I do like the ease and comforts of modern day technology. I do know I could live without them.

    1. I am with you on that one. I used to sew quilts with left over material, but since I am into writing and computers, I have lost the interest in handwork. In my dreams I would like to live in the past, but in reality I would miss too much. I think I would have big problems with the hygene of the olden days.