Phone Home!

Posted on July 8, 2011


Those of us who are living abroad or in a long-distance relationship have it so easy compared to even just five years ago.  I love it every time I call my Grandpa, and he exclaims with thrill: “Oh, Jenny!  You’re calling from El Salvador?!  It sounds like you’re just in the other room!”  I laugh and tell him it’s all thanks to technology.  In truth, though, I don’t understand the technology one bit.  Grandpa’s right — how we’re able to call or email or SEE people, live, on video, from thousands of miles away really IS amazing.

Can you imagine (or remember) racking up hundreds of dollars in international, or even cross-country phone bills?  Or punching bajillions of digits from a calling card into your phone before being able to make a call, which then gets clipped off without warning?  Or writing *gasp!* real letters and waiting months for them to arrive?  Heck, nowadays we’ve got it made.  (Though real letters are still nice, hint hint.)

The ease with which we can stay in touch, though, means that we have no excuse not to.  And ultimately, I think that’s a good thing.  For expats, taking advantage of the technological tools available to us is key to maintaining healthy roots and relationships.  Staying in regular contact with family members and close friends keeps you connected to your old home, which helps you feel not so much like a fish out of water in your new one.

Here I’ve briefly mentioned my favorite services (click through to see each one):


The more familiarized you become with these technologies, the easier they become to use — and thus, the more you use them.  The more you use them, the more in-touch and connected you feel to home.  And the more connection you feel, the happier you are.  So be like ET, and phone home!




Posted in: Expat living