Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Hard and Soft (04/23/09)
TITLE: Gram Gets Upgraded
By Patricia Herchenroether
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“After all, Gram,” said Hannah, “we all love and miss you so much! We hardly ever get to see you and we could send messages back and forth every single day!” Then 10-year-old Sammy snatched the phone away from his sister. “Guess what, Grandma! I could send you pictures of me and our new puppy-and my cousin Broghan and Uncle Butch and Aunt Kelly. I learned how!”
Their mother got on the phone extension. “Mom,” Sue (as in Sue-the-rational-teacher) expanded, “you never even unpacked the cell phone we sent you because you thought ‘those foreign spies’ were listening in. You can use a secure web site to email us. This family is large and spread over the West Coast. In your time zone, it’s too late for us to call you after work. I want to visit with my mother more than just on weekends. Please?” That net hauled me into the boat.
Two weeks later I received a check in the mail from the funds my family pooled, along with an 800 number and complete list of what to order. It read a bit like something out of my favorite reruns of Startrek. Like the Enterprise, I embarked on a journey to ‘Space-The Final Frontier,’ and picked up the telephone.
Whoops-forgot my hearing aid.
I switched the phone to my good ear. “Uh, hello,? I would like to purchase a personal computer.”
“You may call me Mrs. Everson, and please speak a little more slowly.”
“Certainly, Mrs. Everson, what is it that you are looking for?”
“I just told you-a personal computer. Here is exactly what I want,” and I read down the list.
Easy as pie.
“Well, I must say you were well-prepared. One or two more questions and we can close the order.”
After we got the first-name business cleared up, he seemed like a very polite gentleman.
“Mrs. Everson, would you care to add any extra hardware to your order?”
“No, just send the nails and screws that come with it.”
“(chuckle). No ma’am, I meant would you care to purchase an all-in-one machine?”
Isn’t that what I just ordered?
“Never mind, Mrs. Everson, what about upgrading your software? Some of yours may be a bit obsolete.”
“Young man, I do not care to answer that question and it is my opinion that you are very impertinent for asking!”
Strange noises. Did we get cut off?
In a voice that didn’t seem quite so amicable as before, he said, “Please listen carefully. We constantly search for new drivers to keep abreast of things.”
Dear Lord, please help me stay calm.
“I am certainly not a new driver-haven’t driven for years! Are you trying to gather information for some other company? If so, I don’t intend to order anything from you!”
Now that threat brought back his polite demeanor and we quickly wrapped up the sale.
When I recall that conversation five months ago, I want to crawl under my new corner computer desk and hide. Talk about pc dummies! (by the way, I bought one of those ‘Dummie’ books, which I recently gave to a friend). Since then, I have emailed, sent photos, surfed, and shopped online. I have changed hardware settings and installed software, and bought a printer/scanner that I use daily. My MP3 keeps me company while working in the garden.”
I thank my Gracious Father for orchestrating this whole thing. Oh yes, you skeptics, He really does use things of this world to do His work. I’m presently writing a book of verses for children based on The Holy Bible. I also used my (very) humble artistic talent to write and illustrate a booklet for charity. I write a nature page just for kids, with puzzles, games, and information about God’s creations.
The Lord will do whatever it takes to bring us closer to Him. He will use whoever and whatever that will do the job, even children and hi-tech gizmos. I was certainly upgraded when He urged me to step out in faith and leave old ways behind. Whoops. Gotta run-my cell’s ringing!
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