A mobile chat with my mother usually goes off like this:
“Hello! Can you hear me! I am very busy so can’t talk much! I have a question.”
“Umm OK but is your speaker on? Can you please speak a little softly?”
“Yes, yes, OK… I know how to operate smartphones. Still smarter than a lot of you! Don’t waste my time; I need to go to the dentist so please book a cab for me.”
Despite pushing 80, my mom has a strong competitive spirit and has taught herself how to operate a smartphone, sign up on social media and listen to music. I have often been ticked off for not being considerate enough to read and like her posts!
The man-phone tussle senior citizens experience
As I drove to her place, I thought about her and all other Moms who are past their middle age. They must be struggling to come to terms with technological progress. It must be so difficult for them- from having the whole neighbourhood dropping in to watch Doordarshan on their new shiny black-and-white TV set to streaming the latest movies on their personal devices! From typing out letters on typewriters to emails on computers- they have a lot on their plate to adjust to.
It occurred to me that I need to help out more and not assume she can pick up the rest herself. I needed to show Mom how she can use her phone for booking cabs, ordering her meds, buying grocery and so on; it would be of immense help to her. She would feel tech-savvy and happy not to be dependent on others. Not wishing to waste a single moment, I made a date with her and ..