The street where I live now, as a 36 year old is walking distance to the street where I spent the ages of six and thirteen.
I recently took a walk down my old street with my son. I reminisced to how different life was back then. The scenery has changed surprisingly very little. Houses that were neglected in the mid 1990’s are still quite neglected in 2020. Houses that were taken care of are still taken care of. One in particular was my next door neighbor who I know has since moved away as well, yet the yard remains immaculate.
I walked past houses where I remember going inside to play with my friends at the time, and even vague memories of the things we played with (Tazo? Pogs?) – But barely remembered the name, or even face of the friend who lived there. I remembered moments of fun other kids on the street and I used to have – such as riding our bikes down alleyways and up to and around the local school, going to a park and climbing into the massive bushes, and letting off sparkler bombs just because it was Saturday or Sunday afternoon.
We grew up healthy and happy, and devoid of most of the negativity I see in modern day life. We didn’t have the technology of today’s generation, and the only screen time we had was the four main television channels that existed on Australian TV. It wasn’t really until the mid 90’s that Foxtel came into existence for us, and even then it was sporadic in finding something to watch at a specific Time of the day.
Nowadays I don’t see the activity on the streets nearly as much as I remember there being when I was younger. With technology so advanced in gaming, and even the ease of access to things such as a mobile phone is almost foreign to anyone over the age of their early thirties now. We can easily remember times when we would either have to ‘call after 9 when it was free’ or ‘cram as much into one text message because they cost 22c each. I remember one time a friend at the time didn’t bother to reply to my Happy Birthday text messages because “it would cost too much to reply to everybody”.
I wonder what impact this sort of technology is having on the youth of today. While I realise I am only focusing on the negatives I truly believe that children of today are losing their innocence far quicker. The access to smartphones is giving them access to all sorts of things that were not accessible to us born of a certain time.
Now that I have a school aged child myself, I am going to let my kids be kids for as long as they can. It’s awfully boring being an adult; and you have to be one for such a very long time.