The Times They Are A-Changin'


I turned 50 a few years ago. OK, I confess it was more than a few, almost 5 to tell the truth. In spite of the fact that “50 is the new 40,” a couple of things happened recently to make me feel old. At dinner with a new employee (of the architectural firm) and his wife, she asked me, “So how old are your children?” Lee replied to his wife before I had a chance, “They’re our age.” To keep the theme going, Lee asked me at a lunch a few days later, “So when you started out you drew by hand?” As I answered affirmatively, I could only imagine him picturing me riding up to the office and tying my horse to the hitching post.

I’m happy to report Lee is a great employee and these two incidents have not been reflected in subsequent performance reviews.

It didn’t seem that long ago that we laughed at our parents because they couldn’t run the VCR. Now as my children set up our home computer network or Internet-connected TVs they ask, “What’s a VCR?”

“The Times They Are A-Changin” – Bob Dylan sang those lyrics 50 years ago. It’s a new millennium, an electronic age, and it’s hard to imagine a time when things were changing so rapidly. Search engines, social media, and access to information instantaneously, anywhere. My son, the engineer, informs me that my smart phone is much more powerful then the computers that were used to land the first man on the moon. I remember just last week when a cloud was a white fluffy thing in the sky, not a remote storage server for my excess data.

The line just before “The Times They Are A-Changin” in that Dylan song is “For You Better Start Swimmin’ Or You’ll Sink Like A Stone.” At the risk of being immodest, I’ve always been a good swimmer.

My co-workers at the architecture firm are almost all younger. They like to make fun of my technology skills, but I have to say with some pride Extra Touch Tours is doing pretty good with its new technology director; me. That’s right, me. We have a Facebook page, a website, and a blog. I actually think we have more “likers” and “subscribers” than my architecture firm – Of course we get to go to amazing places with amazing people, who wouldn’t want to check that out? Our accountant loves our new electronic accounting software too.

Yes, we are a 20 year old company of 4 people all over 50 who try to keep your travel both amazing and affordable. At the same time, we want you to know we’re “connected” and well suited to serve you in the 21st century. Technology is important, but after all, we are Extra TOUCH Tours, and that TOUCH part is all about the people, the personal service, and friendships our business was built on. It remains our most important tenant and technology is a bit impersonal when it comes to all that.

“The Times They Are A-Changin,” and Extra Touch Tours is doing well to change with them, but we’ll never lose The Extra Touch.

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