Let’s face it, I am no chicken. At 64, I find myself scanning news to see what might interest Senior Citizens, obviously looking for schemes which benefit people like me. There have been generous schemes, especially in the Indian Railways which offer considerable benefit to travelling senior citizens. Women aged 58 and above get 50 % concession while men aged 60 and above get 40 % concession on the regular fares.
Our modes of communicating are fast changing too. There are a million jokes and cartoons, which sadly reflect reality, doing the rounds which harp on how families are increasingly spending less time talking to each other in person. A mother in a cartoon tells her son, “Don’t text me on what you want for breakfast from your bedroom. This is my home, not a take away joint.” Yes, we do miss the days when we were told we had to be back home in time for dinner as a “family that eats together stays together.” We spoke much more to each other as there weren’t gadgets to distract us from our conversations. However, I must add that many of my age are taking to Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp, and what have you- and enjoying it! Interestingly, even what were seen to be staid institutions like the Election Commission of India have asked people to lodge their complaint over WhatsApp!!
There are some things that I personally hate though about the world I live in. The IVR has taken over the cosy relationship we had with employees, in banks for example, who provided us with answers to our queries. It is most annoying to have to answer dozens of options to find out something that someone could have told me in a fraction of the time less.
Yet I realize that even in the way we spend and pay for our spends things are changing. In the old days the cheque was most commonly used, and then came the ubiquitous credit card. Now almost all payments can be made on line. Payments from your mobile will soon become the way of making transactions. This article in the Times of India shows how spending- and payments are going cellular in India.
Coming back to where I started we senior citizens too can now take advantage of the world we live in and book our railways tickets online with no discomfort. A far cry from my days as a youth when buying a train ticket meant a visit to the railway station, huge queues and innumerable hassles in getting that railway ticket.
In conclusion, I guess we need to adapt to the changing world around us. Enjoy the benefits it gives us and yet not fall prey to some of it’s dangers.