Yesterday -15th Nov’2011 I travelled across the globe, cost free and without leaving any carbon footprint. It happened when I attended a Skype call along with my fellow VoF correspondents and colleagues from WP.
Interestingly, a few hours before the call was to happen, my Internet had a breakdown. And then, when the call started, Calliflower or Skype wouldn’t allow me to call the designated number! Now entered Scott-the-classic-rescuer! Finally, the agony was over and I could hear Rachael reading out of the VoF’s manual. I had missed the first 10 min or so, and yet I could tell it was her. Firm, no mincing of words, yet, very warm, and very reassuring. Yup, it had to be her!
But here’s the confession of a Miss Speedy Bunny: I already had read every manual, saw the wellness video, read through all the modules and all the assignments. So, now on the ‘orientation’ call, I was this restless creature sitting, waiting for the orientation to get over and the voices to pour in.
Finally, at 4.27, (my notebook clock was adjusted to Madrid time) it came. Rachael opened the room for everyone. Then I could hear Treasureisland (deep, booming voice) and it took me straight to Africa. With Redbird I went to interior China, with Lucia and Rumbi I was in Africa again and when Usha called and we could hear only an incomprehensible cacophony, I nodded: yes, this was post war Nepal where things are in chaos and in the middle of that chaos, a woman was trying to create something meaningful.
I wish I could hear others too: colleagues from Nicaragua, Serbia, Palestine and Cambodia - countries that I sooooooo want to visit, but I can’t. For that matter, I can’t travel anywhere. But it’s that wish that keeps me alive. It’s more than wanderlust; it’s a dream to see, smell, taste, know, share, learn, embrace, love, enhance, and enrich.
(This is why I love it so in World Pulse, it helps a prisoner like me escape and be a global traveler, explorer of places and people.)
Back to the call, I was scared that ‘Mr beckbeck’ was never going to speak. But then, thanks to Pat of Thailand who I presume couldn’t join the call but had a question, he did! Gentle and warm (and surprisingly soft spoken) – pretty much like the way we have found him till now.
To sum up, I have been using skype for well over 2 years now. But I never thought that I could ever enjoy a group call - something I absolutely dreaded. Also, I never thought that non-video calls over skype could be fun. But it did. And that’s how I not had a lovely evening – the aftertaste of which is going to stay for a long, long time!