Contact

When I first got to Australia for the first couple of months, I was writing emails to family and a few friends. They were worried I’d gone on this big adventure on my own – I’m still the baby son/brother in my families eyes. So I’d try and send texts and the make an odd phone call like an excited child ‘guess where I am now’ (yeh, I was/am THAT annoying).

However, I didn’t come here to document to them what I was doing, but for the first time in my life I wrote a daily diary/blog for myself (uploaded elsewhere in case I ever lose it) almost everyday for 2 months, as I wanted to remember it all. I’ve read some of it back lately and it’s mostly nonsense (1000 word post about doing nothing and why I done nothing that day….yeh I know, I don’t know how either). But I’m glad I done it as I’d completely forgotten some things. Anyway, I digress.

Even though I took the time to send people emails, make phone calls and texts (even non-annoying ones) it dawned on me a month or so ago that, apart from immediate family and drunken phone calls every now and again from my cousins, no one else has made any effort to keep in touch with me.

I get maybe an email each month from my brother, sister and dad (who writes to me like he’s writing a formal letter to a solicitor). I’ve also kept in touch with my brothers, sister and a couple of mates using WhatsApp on my phone (basically free text messages as long as you have a data connection). Add this to include monthly phone call to/from my dad and that is as much as I hear from anyone else back home.

I haven’t really embraced the whole Skype thing yet and neither has any family or friends…I used it for the first time ever the other day with my dad – fuck me that was difficult ”I can I see you, what button do I press, can you see me…can you see me now…can you hear me…hello….can you hear me…” etc. Never. Again. Old people and technology don’t mix.

Although after the rigmarole, just as Neil Armstrong uttered those famous words on the moon, my dad’s first proper words on Skype were “you haven’t put on weight…or lost weight either, it’s good this Sky thing isn’t it”. Errr ok, thanks dad, nice to see you for the first time in 5 months too! Still not quite sure if he was expecting me to starve or balloon when I got here.

People in work asked if I keep in touch with family and friends and I replied, “not much” (it makes me sound like I’m a knobhead with no mates back home)! But with people not queuing up to keep in touch, then I don’t see the need to. There is only so much effort I can make to get nothing in return. So the occasional emails, phone calls and texts from me, stopped. I sent my mate a text 2 weeks ago and their reply was ‘where have you been’…why not call/text me rather than wait for me to do it? I might be miles away but I’m just as easily contactable as I was back home.

I’m not really sure how much I expected to keep in touch with family and friends when I left, after all I don’t want to cling on to that – I wouldn’t have left in the first place if I needed it, but I didn’t think it’d be mostly one way either.  Why don’t they phone, text or email me?  Is it down to initiate contact all the time?  I don’t know.

And now I’ve got this far down I’m not really sure what my point is. I did have one. I think I did anyway, otherwise I wouldn’t have started typing.  It annoys me that no one makes much effort to keep in touch. But at the same time I’m not annoyed.

Profound eh?  This is how I roll.

(I no longer wonder how I wrote 1000 words about nothing. I’ve just wrote 700 when I could’ve probably condensed this post into a 140 character twitter message).

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9 thoughts on “Contact

  1. hello, found you through link on LC’s blog —
    thought I’d pass on one of my favorite “quotes out of context” —

    “Each piece of mail must have its day in the sun,
    its chance to engage me in its magic of the new
    or repel me with its blatant familiarity.
    All messages are holy”
    –The Scorpions by Robert Kelly

  2. When I was over there, I had to keep in near constant contact with the (then) boyfriend who was back in the UK, and sometimes I just wished that I could have a few days of no one knowing where I was. Sometimes I felt a little bit too contactable, hooked up to Facebook, text, phone, and Skype.

    I think generally when you go abroad, most people assume you’re the one having all the fun and that they’d be distracting you from all the adventures you’re having if they called and text. After all, it’s life as normal back home.

    I found keeping a blog for parents / friends helped to keep them in the loop without requiring too much effort for contact.

  3. Just as well Einstein did not have a mobile and Skype account, we would probably never have got his theory of relativity but a load of gripes and ramblings about Relatives friends and communication – evolving into the following theory :-

    Einstein’s theory of Relafrienication :-
    Friends are not uniform and absolute. Furthermore, friends cannot be relied on to keep in touch as space does not always make the heart grow fonder. Instead, an added dimension has to be taken into account with curved spacetime (i.e the gap between the UK and Australia as it wraps around our planet*). Time now depended on velocity (the speed in which your friends forget your existence) , and contraction became a fundamental consequence as relatives make feeble efforts to keep in touch….

    *If only the flat earth society had been correct there would be no curved spacetime…

    Basically there are two types of people in life. The ones like you and me who make all the effort to keep in touch and the others who sit back and wait for the contact.

    There is another theory that you (or is it me) are the only actually person in existence and when you/I leave somewhere everything vanishes as it does not actually exists outside our imagination….Now all we have to do is work out am I imagining writing a comment to you or are you imagining me writing a comment to you…

  4. Mikaloguer
    Hi Mikaloguer, thanks for reading/commenting. The quote makes sense, I think 🙂

    Jo
    Agree, I quite like not hearing from people, I still go a week or two with nothing from anyone and then maybe a flurry of activity. But it’s more effort on my part to do a blog – similar to the emails – and for all I know people weren’t even reading them given the lack of replies.

    BlackLOG
    You’re right, after reading your comment, I remembered that I could probably sift through my blog and find me moaning about not hearing from mates a year or two ago. Nevermind when I’m here.

    Whether I’m here or you’re there is another matter entirely. Maybe I’m in my own Truman Show, my friends never really existed, it was all a test. Maybe you’re watching me now.

    But you’re right, you’re not real, I’m not real, we’re all binary robots. Skynet has taken over.

  5. My dad lives several hundred miles away from me and I never hear from him either. Even when it’s my birthday I don’t get a call. (I do get a card in the mail however.) Thanks to your post I finally know why. He doesn’t like me!!! 🙂

  6. You should problably try to understand that: … NO ONE GIVES A CRAP THAT YOU ARE IN AUSTRALIA ENJOYING YOURSELF AND HAVING AN ADVENTURE.

    for everyone else, you are just not around as much as you used to be.
    It’s a tough pill to swallow, but I’m serving it up for you.
    From my experience, a phone call to my Mom every few months and a few e-mails on birthdays and Christmas were enough for my family and friends.

    note: wait until you try to show your trip photos to the people back home. No one cares … unless there are topless girls in the photos. (seriously)

    double note: are you the second born twin? (making you the youngest) I’m a stickler for details. hee hee!

    • Now that I reread that first note, it sounds a bit hostile at the beginning. It wasn’t supposed to: I just meant everyone at home isn’t having a great big adventure daily, like you. It’s just another “do the usual” for them. I ‘m sure they think about you, but then it’s time to get back to work or watch a football game on TV or go to the pub or go shopping or do the laundry or …

      • planetross
        Hostile or not, you’re right anyway…which I knew. What I was trying to get at was that it’s always me making the effort to call people – be that if i was next door, in a different city, on a different continent or planet. But as you and Jo said, it’s like when people go on holiday, nobody gets in touch with them as they just presume that person is too busy etc. But I can probably go and find a post about me saying the same thing 12 months ago, so he fact I’m in Australia is neither here nor there really (it’s just another element/reason to factor in).

        Don’t worry I’m not a photo bore, any photos I’ve taken are for me not to bore others with (I think I’ve put about 10 on facespace only cos my sister wanted to see some).

        I’m the second born twin, the youngest, the afterbirth…hence no one caring (JOKE!) haha 😀

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