For my Nanny’s 80th birthday – 20 years ago – she asked the family to buy her a computer. I would argue that in 1999, most 80 year-olds were wondering where the Windows were on computers, why people were adding e’s before words, and were downright suspicious of the “interweb”.
It’s not like my Nanny had the advantage of being a tech genius back then. In fact, my gift to her was taking over her phone bill to cover the cost of going from a party line – yes a party line – to dial up so that we could connect her to the world. What set my Nanny apart, was a desire to learn new things and a willingness to reach out to those in the know to help her along the way.
It was a slow process, with her making frequent calls to my parents and myself to learn new programs or just to refresh her knowledge and gain a sense of comfort that she was doing the right thing. It was great getting her emails and computer generated cards for special occasions that she had created using software she installed herself.
When Facebook started up, we helped her set up her profile and she started adding us all as friends. Then, one rainy day, I received a Facebook notification that I had been invited to play a game of Scrabble by my Nanny. She had found the Facebook games section! One thing you need to know about my Nanny is that she is a fierce competitor at all games, with word games being her specialty. I often joke that she has forgotten more words than I will ever know. With reluctance, I accepted the first game and was handily destroyed after a few days of play; the advantage of online games is they don’t have to be completed in one sitting. I lost the second game, then the third and the fourth.
Then I found a handy-dandy website that lets you put in your combination of letters and it spits out all of the words that can be created from them. I also use the “teacher” function after each play to see what word I should have played to get the most points. Utilizing that over all the games I have played with her and others has made me a better strategist and overall player. Knowing my luck, Nanny follows Central Counties and I am now busted. But until now, I don’t think she knew I was cheating. In all honesty that is probably because even using all of the resources at my fingertips, she still has managed to win 78 games to my 50!!!
I believe one of the reasons for my Nanny’s longevity is her desire to learn new things and refresh her knowledge of things she already knows. I know that when I am at conferences or workshops, I am just as revitalized when the speaker talks about things that I am already doing as I am when they give me a brand new “aha” moment. That’s because it is always refreshing to hear that you are doing the right things.
Central Counties has launched a new Tourism Ambassador webinar that I would encourage you all to take time to watch. My bet is that you have a few “aha” moments, a few “I know I should be doing that but aren’t moments and many “Good for me, I am doing that” moments. It will leave you feeling refreshed, regenerated and raring to implement some changes to your business. Then on October 8th, we are hosting a half day seminar on how to be more prepared for securing funding from Federal and Provincial funders. More info about most of these programs are in this newsletter.
My Nanny has never lost her love for learning new things. At 99, she took up painting rocks. Why rocks? So she could take them with her on her walks and drop them along the trails so that other people could find them and enjoy them. On the back, each one says “Painted to brighten your day. Feel free to take it with you or leave in another spot for someone else to find.” I have to admit that I am jealous of her steady hand…
I am interested to see what new thing she wants to learn this year!