“Throwback Thursday” and telephones: When I was a child living in Montreal, I remember we would call my mother’s parents in Florida once a month and use an egg timer. Yes, literally an egg timer – to make certain the phone call didn’t go over our family’s three minute limit. Long distance phone calls were expensive! I remember my brother Gerry and I staring at the tiny grains of sand drip, drip, drip through the teeny hole, and my mother talking more quickly to her mother and father as the grains became fewer and fewer and then Gerry and I would quickly say “Hi Grannie. Hi Grandad” (and not much more) and the phone call would be over.
Decades later, a phone call from an island on the west coast of Canada to the Netherlands can go on and on and on for hours as laughter bursts forth with the stories that are shared … like this photo I took of my dear husband Hans in our Studio talking on the phone to his siblings in Zeist. The invention of the phone and the under-four-dollars for several hours of conversation cost allowed us to stay well-connected with our Dutch family without concern that we would be going over our phone budget.
Thank you Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Watson for being the earliest developers of the telephone and thank you to all who have played a part over the years in creating portable phones, lower long distance phone rates, free 911 calls, etc. You have brought countless people a sense of security that practical help can easily be contacted in case of emergency, and brought much joy as the voices of loved ones are heard and conversations are shared. And while I know that phones can be frustrating these days (what with the increasing prevalence of scammers), I’m very grateful they exist. “Throwback Thursday” … I love it!