I swung open the door, passing the neon sign. He was behind the counter, a smile waiting for the entering customer. When he saw me his smile faded a little.
“Karla! I tried to call you, this is very late!”
I lowered my head at his disproving tone and placed my DVD on the counter.
“We sent you a letter” he continued, “ignore it when it comes through”
He punched some buttons on his computer, and looked at me, this time his head lowered.
I took the £15 I had brought with me, and handed it to him.
He shook his head.
“I don’t mind, you know, I knew I had to return it, I don’t mind”
I indicated the money he was putting in the till.
He shook his his head. I took my change and left.
Not for the first time ‘lovefilm’ rang in my ears. I got in the car.
“Where to now Mummy?”
Any argument I have for ‘lovefilm’ was squashed with that question. Not so much the question itself, but who was asking it. My child.
By going to the DVD shop to rent a DVD, I wasn’t getting a cheaper deal. Sure thing that online rental is much cheaper, no doubt about it. I was paying for the experience. Not only for me but as a parent. I want my children to go into shops and purchase things, hire instead of own. Sure we don’t have to, but I want to. I want them to know that.
The very act of doing this kind of thing is slowly fading away before our eyes, and we’re letting it happen.
I love technology, as a creative person I love the Internet, the best invention of our time. But it shouldn’t define us. I’m not a fan of erasing the old to bring in the new.
Tech switch off days are becoming normal practice as we struggle to keep tabs on our digital world. I’m probably the first person in my family who’d cry if you took her toys away, but I understand its necessary.
Unless we do, we’ll be so far down the line, looking back at things via google glass trying to get that experience.
The old days are here now for us, whether we realise it or not. And while I do sometimes joke I’m single handedly keeping that DVD shop afloat, I don’t mind!