LAURA CARTLEDGE Life’s like That...Never mind the digital age, I think I’d prefer a quill pen...

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Technology has made it almost impossible not to be in touch.

And while this can have its benefits I think it’s all a bit sad.

I’ve seen couples sitting on romantic dinner dates starring lovingly into the screens of their separate mobile phones and friends texting each other while sitting in the same room.

Surely these things are supposed to aid communication not kill it?

The focus is on being fast – but surely the key to good communication is taking your time?

I know I am technically a member of the digital generation – but some days I just pine for the days of carrier pigeons and quills.

Post is one of my favourite things in the universe. Granted this doesn’t apply to the letters from the taxman, car insurance people or anyone else who is generally after my soul.

But proper postcards from my granddad off on his adventures or a little stamped something from my sister as she takes a break from doing battle with her studies just can’t be beaten.

Post takes time, it takes effort and it takes thought – which are surely the three main ingredients for making something special, and perhaps the three things technology removes.

And these feelings have only got stronger since I’ve entered the world of work.

My days, and inbox, are packed full of emails and the hours staring at the screen are punctuated by the phone ringing. Of course in my line of work I need to be in touch and there is no doubt the computer makes my job a damn sight easier.

However I have to admit all this makes me enjoy the moments when I am ‘unplugged’ even more.

As a family we visit rural Germany a lot and being nestled up in the hills, well, it doesn’t get much more unplugged than that. And it is bliss!

We read, play cards and generally do all the things we would like to do at home – only without the guilt of neglecting chores, social engagements or the overwhelming desire to do nothing after a hard day in the office.

I can’t help thinking that perhaps it is time to take inspiration from days gone by. To turn off the telly and bring out a board game and to talk face to face, not screen to screen.

* Is it me, or has the world gone mad?

In other news what is going on with the news!? If nature isn’t doing its best to destroy our planet, certain world leaders certainly are. Rebels are heroes, security forces are putting people at risk and peace-keeping means patrolling the skies. It is, for want of a better description, absolute madness! I like to keep informed with the rest of the world, but it is a struggle to resist the urge to change channel as the events unfold and the planet unravels.