Bad Economy Contributes to the Tyranny of Distance

Posted on: February 24, 2009

The Tyranny of Distance

The Tyranny of Distance

 No reminders are needed to bring to mind the current economic doldrums. What really hurts is that we will not be visiting our children as much this year. The reason; we are trying to be cautious with money. This means that we will miss some important life-events with our family to save the nest-egg.

Our oldest son calls this phenomenon “The Tyranny of Distance”. When everyone lived close, our life-event celebrations just required setting a time, sending invitations, determining the activities and purchasing the gifts. But today, thousands of miles separate us and creates a distance that seems to be tyrannical in its power. We don’t blame our children for the distance that has been created. They are seeking great opportunities and we are proud of them.

Before the economic downturn, distance did not seem as big a hurdle as it is today. Catching a flight, a couple of nights in hotels and dinner on the road were not questioned when the 401K wasn’t tanking. Christmas in California just meant some gas and a 10-hour drive down I-5. When a new baby arrived in New Hampshire, we would fly in to celebrate. By traveling we could be personally connected and continue to share in our family experiences. But now distance is the tyrant that has power over our personal connections.

These economic realities have not stopped some of the traditional activities from finding a way around distance. We still send the gifts and attempt to spoil the grandchildren. We still connect by phone, webcam, email and social networks. But the rich personal connections are much more difficult to produce in today’s realities.

We are grateful that the internet is delivering so many great tools to breakdown the grip that distance has placed upon us. We will continue to do everything possible to join every life-event; even if it must be online. These actions are our personal protest against the tyranny of distance


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