Have you ever tried to plan a family reunion when the planning committee members live thousands of miles apart? My cousins and I had approximately a year to organize a three-day reunion for 150 relatives, and we could only get together as a group once during that time. Our secret weapon? E-mail!
We kept the information highway busy sending ideas, lists and notes back and forth. In the months preceding the reunion, I would receive maybe five or six messages a week. But as the event grew closer, the messages came faster and faster until it was more like five or six a day. It was a frenzy of number crunching, food arrangements and T-shirt orders. I couldn’t let more than a few hours go by without booting up the computer.
I checked my e-mail for the last time the morning of the first day of the reunion—no messages. I was bereft. Somehow I had come to enjoy the frantic pace on the keyboard. And I felt rather anxious about severing the connection that had tied me so easily to the others all year long.
Well, our reunion was a great success. My cousins and I couldn’t have been happier. In the days that followed, though, we were all e-mailed out—not one e-mail for a whole week.
Slowly we started up again with a couple of lines. We may never again reach the crazy state before the reunion, but we’ll always be grateful to the technology that made it happen.