I had to smile when reading an article by Laura Spencer (see my Outsourced Communications page) where she writes about senior citizens getting active on blogs, Facebook etc. My 72 year old father Paul Chalupsky may have just learnt how to switch a computer on, but he has joined Facebook! I nearly fell off my chair when he made some reference to my blog the other day. I did not think he knew what a blog was let alone how to find my one.
Sure, he responds to about 1 in 20 e-mails that he receives (if you are lucky) because it takes him an hour to write a 1 line response but who cares? He is trying. He is getting involved. He has taken on the challenge.
My Dad is no stranger to challenges. He immigrated to Australia at the age of 65 as his wife wanted to be near her family. Moving to the other side of the world to a strange country at any age is a scary prospect. I can just imagine what it must have been like at 65, leaving ones comfort zone, all ones friends and of course, the majority of ones family.
Obviously when his wife Betty died, life became very lonely for him. During his visit to South Africa last December I encouraged him to sign up on an over 55’s dating site. Sure, I had to do all the writing and uploading of pictures but he was extremely enthusiastic about the idea. He had more faith in the idea of online dating than I did…
Well, to cut the possible Mills and Boon future novel short, he met the most wonderful lady. She has given him a renewed zest for life and will hopefully be the catalyst to inspire him where all his children and grandchildren have failed – by making him return to South Africa to enjoy his twilight years surrounded by friends, family and loved ones, both old and new.