Weekly Writing Challenge: Mind the Gap: Facebook To Poke Or To Puke

morticia and castle

Morticia, My Pet in Petville – a Facebook pastime

To begin I could not fill in the questionnaire. Why? Today Facebook no longer gives me food for thought and the choice of items to agree or disagree with did not cover my ideas.

Let us begin at the beginning. Facebook was forbidden on the computer, was blocked in the company where I worked. There were too many having a look in between, posting and liking. Too much valuable working time was lost.

I only really fell into the Facebook world when I was retired. It seemed to be a compensation for my working life. I played games until one fine day I realised there was a real world out there somewhere. Planning a fictitious farm or restaurant was not the essence of life and begging other members for little gifts to help me to complete a quest was not exactly worthy of a Nobel prize. There was housework to do, not just to be fitted in between. I had other hobbies, photography and writing which were slowly being neglected for the sake of a brainless game.

I have belonged to this club of lost souls for about five years. I still belong. No “belong” is the wrong word, Facebook belongs to me. I enter with a name and password. I have gone through a metamorphosis in this world of likes and shares. I used to write things, post photos, write a status with no real meaning. Now I have become an observer, lurking in the shadows of a web site that automatically opens on a tab every day. I really do not need it, so why is it always open on a separate tab? I suppose because it is there.

Something happened a couple of weeks ago which made me think. My other half is not really a Facebook person; forums and social sites are not his sort of thing. He has other hobbies and where my computer is full of photos and blogs, his is full of music. However, he did risk a step into the world of Facebook as being an amateur jazz musician; he could maintain contact with other musicians and jazz lovers. I would call him a reluctant Facebooker. One day he found enough is enough. He asked himself the question “do I really need this rubbish?” His answer was “No” and he left Facebook. This gave me a “poke” to use a Facebook word. I followed his way of departure. A lengthy process, but he did it. The last information he got from Facebook was that he had two weeks last respite before he was eternally banned. To cut a long story short, he made use of the two weeks and rejoined on the last day of his exile. His colleagues convinced him that he would be missed and so he is back.

This got me thinking. Shall I leave? Facebook was becoming a slight nuisance. The daily confessions from the general public, their daily diaries of what they were doing; the declarations of love and respect for this, that and the other were frankly said “getting on my nerves”. Am I such a selfish person that I do not declare my eternal respect for a departed parent or family member for all to see. No, making private public is not my thing.  I could understand my husband completely. I am still there and have not left. The only reason being that I have a couple of far flung relations in other countries, some ex workmates and friends. I also treasure the fact that I can cross post my WordPress blogs.

I have about 700 contacts in Facebook that I do not know and have never met; a remainder of my gaming days.

I realised I would miss some groups I belong to. Various author. musicians and art as well as a group in the area from where I originate in London. Not to mention that my old school has a thriving site with many names belonging to my school days around 1959-1964.

If Facebook collapsed tomorrow or ceased to exist, I would not cry. I would have a couple of regrets, but my life would continue as normal. It just not important enough to spend time on mourning its departure.

For those that enjoy this public spectacle of showing off their feelings, thoughts and beliefs, I wish them all the best; if you enjoy it, then why not. It is no longer my idea of enjoyment.

Weekly Writing Challenge: Mind the Gap

Daily Prompt: A Mystery Wrapped in an Enigma

Tell us something most people probably don’t know about you.

Photographers, artists, poets: show us MYSTERIOUS.

Belfry, St. Urs Cathedral, Solothurn

There are mysteries which just should not be aired, so I thought. As always when I am in doubt whether to tell the world WordPress all my secrets, I ask the one person in my life whose opinion I treasure above all, Mr. Swiss.

“Are there things most people do not know about me?”

Answer (Mr. Swiss):

So I thought big help and now I am on my own. Of course you do not tell your partner that on full moon nights you get a sort of tickling sensation and a secret longing. It is then when I don my black cloak, clean my teeth with a special tooth brush designed for long canine teeth, open the window and I am off to the local blood bank (we vampires are now careful, just cannot but into any neck these days, you never know where the necks have been). During this nocturnal tour, Mr. Swiss is sleeping safely and notices nothing.

Of course I could tell you the real reason why I left England for Switzerland. It all started one day when I was taking a walk near the Houses of Parliament in London and was approached by a member of the British MI6 (secret service). Yes, he had recognised my talents and organised a new life in Switzerland. You really believed all that stuff about me wanting to learn another language and live in another country. It was all part of the deal. I contacted a few gnomes living in Switzerland and sent their secrets over to the Bank of England. I was afterwards transferred to a village which thrived on internal revenue from various millionaires that lived there. I made contact with the population and married to make sure my cover would stick. I was told that all Swiss had gold bars hidden under the bed, and yes, unfortunately there are always exceptions to the rule. There were no gold bars under the mattress. All things have a good ending and it seems that the interest of the British government has now dwindled over the years.

Apart from these facts about the secret life of Anglo Swiss, there is perhaps something I would now like to confess here and now. I am a cemetery tourist. Not that I like to take a rest in a cool dark niche under a stone when wandering across the last resting places of the departed. I am usually armed with a camera.

The idea is that I make a day excursion in a town I do not know so well, or it might be that I take a holiday in another country and visit the local cemetary. Cemetaries are really the places to get to know the history of the place you are. There are untold possibilities. Naturally Mr. Swiss is always with me, holidays can be boring when alone. I remember my visit to Vienna. This town is a feast for cemetery lovers. It has the largest eternal resting place in Europe, the Zentralfriedhof (central cemetery). You really need a map to find the way, but it is rewarding. A complete section with famous composers and musicians, a Russian section and there are even nicely placed benches for Mr. Swiss to take a rest whilst I am hopping from stone to stone clicking away with the camera. Paris is also quite a feast for addicts. There are three wonderful cemetaries, packed with well known departed, even the American star Jim Morrison can be found in Paris, although unfortunately his carved head is always being stolen from the grave.

I found that not even a journey to another country is necessary. Switzerland also has its fair share. The cemeteries in our mountains are packed full with the unfortunate climbers that found their last resting place on a mountain slope.

I have built up quite a collection of photos over the years, but found to my disappointment that most of the graves are to be found in Internet. Nevertheless undaunted I still have hopes of finding something interesting tucked away in the corner of a quiet resting place somewhere in the country.

I made a few interesting discoveries in the South of England, where part of my family origins are. I was once on a tour with a friend of mine (Mr. Swiss remained in Switzerland on this trip) and I visited the village of Etchingham and Ticehurst where great great grandfather Jason originated. It was a very old cemetery, at least one hundred year old graves, and it was difficult to read the names. The skies were darkening as the evening was approaching. I could hear the wind rushing through the tall grass. It seemed to be trying to say something, like put the camera away and go home. However, undaunted I continued and even found a couple of gravestones bearing the family name, which I of course immortalised on my camera.

So now you know my darkest secrets. It is up to you to decide which are the truth and which are not. And now I will tuck into a nice steak for lunch, done rare, but I will not be eating any garlic with it. It is sometimes most annoying when I decide to comb my hair, and have no reflection in the mirror.

Daily Prompt: A Mystery Wrapped in an Enigma