Monday, March 4, 2013


Sometimes Fio thinks we live in a more complicated world than our grandmothers did.  We have to know how to use computers, to work dishwashers and clothes washers and driers and microwaves and convection ovens, to operate garage doors, to set alarm systems and in-ground sprinkler systems--well, Fio hasn't quite mastered that last one yet. 

Then Fio thinks about what women in earlier times had to manage. In caveman days, women had to possess encyclopediacal knowledge of which plants were safe to eat, which ones had medicinal properties, and which ones were deadly.  They had to know how to cure animal skins and turn them into clothing, how to prepare food from scratch and preserve it, how to read the stars and the moon, even how to defend themselves. And in relatively modern times, Fio's own mother had to learn how to use a typewriter and a telephone, to drive a car (which she quit doing as soon as possible), to work a wringer washer, to sew clothes on a treadle machine, to adjust a television.

Maybe every generation has its own complications relative to the circumstances of the time. And when we move on to new circumstances and new times, we forget the old skills. Fiorella, for instance, wouldn't make it through her first day of being a cavewoman.     



No comments: