Small things make me very happy. I am ecstatic just by having an email system that works - the sort of thing that most people take for granted - like hot water coming out of a tap, which is a convenience we were missing for a couple of weeks as well. Just imagine what it must be like to not even have cold water coming out of a tap.
The house where I live was built when water was extracted from outside wells by servants, and everything else was left outside (also by servants) in a covered bucket for the 'night soil men' to collect. Dining rooms had screens in the corner which hid a pot for everyone to piss in.
It seems crazy that the things that even my generation take as a basic human right would have - only a few years ago - been seen as a scientific impossibility. Universal access to the Internet. To the WHAT?!
Cro has been complaining (quite justifiably, in my opinion) about everyone being constantly glued to a phone screen these days, but I think this phenomena will be relatively short-lived. I cannot imagine that the next generation will think it acceptable to consult their phones for Facebook or email up-dates during dinner parties or stage plays - in fact I am astounded that the present one thinks it is. Well, they know it is wrong, but Facebook and text messages have somehow taken precedence over basic manners, and it will take physical violence to make them think otherwise.
H.I. is possibly the only person I know who refuses to use an ordinary mobile phone, let alone a smart one. My simple phone is a tool which I really can not now do without, and if I - like many others I know - refused to pick up to a witheld, private number, then I would have lost much money from secretive clients. I now view mobile phones as a basic human right, like bank accounts or universal suffrage.
Same with automobiles. I can no longer do without a car. In the days when only one in ten young people owned a car, I once spent a whole year never leaving one square mile of this town, and was mildly shocked when I realised this. These days, most young people cannot afford even an old car, so are condemned to make their working environments fit the situation - walking to work at MacDonalds, for instance.
Every time I go to the pub (which is not infrequently) someone comes up and sits next to me in the near-empty bar, then pulls out a phone and fiddles with it, staring at it for about an hour. It is saying something about society when they become offended when I tell them that if they want to use their phone they should go and sit in a corner to do it.