I go with the flow and say Yes to the impromptu invite. JB and Mary have lived a good life, traveled various places in the United States and have great stories to tell. One of the stories takes us St Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands where they spend some of their downtime. JB whips out the picture album to show me all about St. Croix and tells me more about their experiences on this beautiful island by point to his map.
... and then the technology geek in me kicks in.
I excuse myself, run to my house, grab my iPhone, run back, and pull up the Google map and we look at his old St. Croix apartment from the hybrid satellite view of Google maps. For him this experience is just amazing. He doesn't use computers but is amazed at what technology can do these days. He sees the ship lanes that they arrived on, the harbor they docked into, the streets he drove by, the country club that he lived near by, and the actual apartment and pool where he and his wife lived. His eyes light up and a wide smile blushes through the various images and street view pictures.
Technology allows him to vividly reconnect with his memories, and share an emotional experience with a neighbor about something so important to him. It is experiences like this that make me excited about being a tech geek: creating either empowerment or connectedness or both through technology.
People who have lived are filled with wisdom from their unique experience. They tell me to go on my trip and live it up as much as I can. There is no value in saving travel money for retirement, if you are too old to enjoy it. Those experiences are better experienced in your youth when you are more mobile and agile especially if you can afford it.
What a day!! I get treated to dinner with friends, an opportunity to make a difference, and great wisdom to live by.