Sunday 30 May 2010: going to need a bigger buttons
They didn't quite get as far as pushing their glasses down their nose or raising them temporarily above their eyebrows whilst peering more intently and frowning a little more deeply at their mobiles' displays but they came quite close. After several years of having a mobile (ostensibly to enable them to call for help if they break down on their frequent trips up the A9 to their other grandchildren) but almost never using it (and seemingly never leaving it switched on or ever paying any attention to any information on the screen whatsoever) they appear to have recently begun trying to get on top of portable telephone technology before the relatively simple pre-Symbian Nokia NokiaOS portable telephones they currently have cease to be available or cease to work. Nicky's dad recently gained the partial ability to send and receive texts, though not without a few instances of belatedly uncovering and reading a test message someone sent him several years ago (but without noticing that the message is several years old and long since irrelevant) or causing us to receive several uninformatively blank text messages in a row for no apparent reason and of which he subsequently denies sending. They both seem to be able to inadvertently set their handsets to either ring loudly and tastelessly tunefully or completely silently, depending on which is least convenient. Only Nicky's dad has so far been able to turn off the name-displaying function in his contact settings so that he has to ask who sent which message. Nicky's mum's handset still displays names against numbers but she only has four numbers currently stored, two of which are the same.
Sometime before they head back to Ayr I was planning on demonstrating how to download, set up and use Skype so that they can observe their latest grandchild in a form other than the emailed still image as it grows, develops and hopefully starts making comprehensible utterances. It'll be a handy way for them to up their face/voice-familiarity and thus their known-person-to-be-unscared-of quotient so it's in their interest to quickly master the techniques and software involved but I expect it won't be a smooth setup.