RECENTLY THE CBC RAN A PROFILE OF AARON PECK, the Canadian dog sledder who aspires to be the first Canadian to win the Iditarod, the 1,600 kilometre dog sled race across Alaska’s frozen tundra. In the profile, Aaron was referred to as “an Alberta man”. Aaron may well live in Alberta now, but he was raised in none other than the GGA (Greater Grafton Area).
The way Aaron’s adventures were passed along – from television to social media – underscores the effectiveness of today’s communications. Aaron could be mushing his dogs across the ice halfway around the world but within hours, his accomplishments can be shared amongst friends and family back in his old neighbourhood.
Watching Aaron’s TV interview took me back fifteen years to when there was a knock at my door. It was Aaron. I was so pleased that he stopped by. At one time, he’d been a fixture at our house – the blond, gangly teenager who watched endless episodes of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Beverly Hills 90210 with my girls and who consumed countless cookies washed down with huge glasses of milk.
I invited him in. He sat down on the couch as if he’d been there yesterday, smiled at me and said, “You know Mrs. Kelly, I spent some of the best days of my childhood eating cookies here.”
Thinking about that visit made me realize that SnapChat, Facebook and Instagram are great tools that help us stay connected, but there’s nothing more meaningful than old-fashioned, one-on-one conversations with the people you care about.