The purchasing department went from calling vendors and placing orders over the phone, to faxing in orders, then to placing orders via email. Before I left the company after 28 years, many vendors had online options where I could place orders, check status, locate tracking numbers, and a host of other things without ever even contacting a salesperson.
Now that I work from home, it’s the same thing. I have a laptop, phone that’s connected to the world, washing machine, dryer, vacuum cleaner, dish washer, oven, stove, microwave, refrigerator, hot and cold running water, electric heat in the winter and electric A/C in the summer. Other than writing a check (or using automatic payments), I don’t have to do anything except pay for the electricity to run all those appliances and electronics.
Jump back to the 17th century and how people lived. Let’s specifically look at the farmer and the housewife. A household in the countryside was largely self-sufficient. The woman of the house had to bake bread, brew ale (since water wasn’t always safe to drink), cure bacon, salt meat, make jellies and jams, pickles, can vegetables. She had to make candles, sew all the family’s clothes and stuff bedding, tend the garden, the chickens and milk the cow and churn the butter.
The farmer planted the corn that fed his cows that fed his family. He saved seed for the next year. That bread, ale, bacon, and cheese his wife made to sustain them came from the animals and crops they grew on their farm. He chopped wood to cook their food and keep the family warm throughout the winter. He hunted for wild game to supplement their diet. By and large, farm families were self-sufficient and could survive for months, years even, without buying or trading for anything outside of what they could produce on their own.
In a word, they made do.
You’d think that with all these fancy gadgets, computers, phones… goodness, these days we can order our groceries from our phone, pay for them, then drive by the store on the way home from work and pick everything up. And if that’s not fast enough, someone else can prepare our burger and fries, and we just drive thru and eat it on the road.
But here’s the rub. On the surface, many of us seem to be just as busy, or busier, than our counterparts two and three centuries ago. But is that really the case? I’m generalizing of course, but even when we think we’re burning the candle at both ends, or thinking we’ll never get ahead, let’s stop and take a deep breath…
Think about living without electricity (and all the electronics that come with it), running water, an insulated home with a/c in the summer, heat in the winter. Think about either having to walk everywhere or hook up the wagon or saddle a horse. Think about having to lug gallons of water to wash clothes. Think about the worry over a sick child or a farming accident with no doctor or hospital within miles. I could go on and on…
Granted, everything isn’t rosy in 2019, and there are families who are struggling to survive, but I don’t think I want to go back in time to the 17th or 18th century.
Although I do love writing and reading about it. :)
|I think I'll hug my house today!|
What is the one thing you can’t imagine living without? And by one thing, I mean necessary thing. A loaded pizza from your favorite pizza joint isn’t exactly necessary… even though it does sound yummy! Some ideas of what I’m looking for… Electric lights vs. candles/lanterns? Stove vs. fireplace? Washing machine vs. hand washing? Heat-pump vs. fireplace? Automobile vs. walking/wagon?
Check out this Scavenger Hunt!
Have you heard about the Spring Christian Fiction Scavenger Hunt? If not, you're just in time! It ends on the 17th, so hop over to Lisa Bergren's website at Stop #1 and get started. Make sure you enter my giveaway at Stop #21 at pamhillman.com for a chance to win all three books in my Natchez Trace Novel series.
|Go to Stop #1 to start your journey on the|
Spring Christian Fiction Scavenger Hunt, Stop #1