How do people who’ve lost all of their photos, manage to recall the faces of those long gone? What did people do before the days of photographs, if they weren’t fortunate enough to have a portrait artist handy? Is there some skill those people had honed much sharper than we do? Is it one more skill that we are losing, because we have easy external substitutes to save us the effort?
As I’m walking out to my car, to go to an appointment, my thoughts race to all of the wonderful things our cars can do for us now. All of those must haves, saving us all the effort and stress of having to think for ourselves. Reminder buzzers about shutting our doors and putting on our seatbelts. Things to save us the toil of winding our windows up and down, changing gear, remembering how to park, safely change lanes, see what’s behind us. We can even have someone (not actually a someone, but a proximity of, sort of) who can tell us where to go, arrange our entertainment, ring someone for us so we don’t get lonely, tell us what the weather is, tell us the time, regularly remind us of how far we have to go in our journey, and the list goes on.
Who else can’t wait till our house can do all of these things for us as well?
I look in my passenger side door mirror to check for anyone in the lane I wish to merge into, and merge across safely. I had looked up the names of the two streets before the one I needed, and notice the first of those two, which gives me the heads up that I am close. While waiting at the traffic lights, I (manually) wind up the window of my car, knowing instinctively that I’m close to my destination. When I see the building ahead, I look for a parking spot nearby, indicate my intentions, and when safe reverse my car, using my rear vision mirror, into an empty spot.
Another quick glance in the mirror elicits a smile that surprises even me. I’ve just caught a hint of an expression my mother used to have, and the smile is when I think about telling Mum my thoughts. MUM. I’m going to write you a letter later, and let you know all of the wonderful advances in our lives – just to see if you think that all your wishes for my sister and I to have so much more than you did have been realised. I’m sure it will give you a laugh. Miss you. And I blew her a kiss in the mirror.