The web keeps me in touch

My two sons are no longer at home. One now resides in Calgary, the other lives in Cairns, Australia, but I find it almost reassuring that I can find out what is happening in their respective communities every morning.
When my eldest was living in Windhoek, Namibia, I would read the Namibian daily to find out what was happening in the city. It was quite interesting as I followed the politics of the country, and read of the issues facing that new nation and new nation capital.
With Adam in Australia, I am reading the Cairns Post each mid-afternoon. It is the next day’s edition and it seems really strange to be reading tomorrow’s news today (there is a 16-hour time difference).
Half a world away, many of the issues we come to write about are being written in a different country and community.
In the fall, we worry about bears wandering into our back yards looking for food. In Cairns, they have been many sightings of crocodiles wandering into back yards in search of food. One woman even discovered a large boa had consumed her cat.
The animals are removed just as we trap and relocate our bears.
This past Saturday, Australia elected a totally new government and the former prime minister failed to even hold his seat. The new leader, Kevin Rudd, has promised to immediately sign the Kyoto protocol and pull the Australian troops out of Iraq.
The troops likely would go to Afghanistan.
As I write this column, I note that Tuesday’s big headline is that a captain of a dive boat with 88 passengers on board was knocked unconscious by one of the passengers as it headed into port.
In Calgary, the story is of a 14-year-old girl being refused to play at an indoor soccer game because she wore a hajib.
Both are stories concerning the communities in which my sons live. Both papers spend a great deal of effort to write about their communities and the things that affect the lives of the people living in the community.
At the Rainy River Record and Fort Frances Times, we strive to tell the stories of the people in our districts who are part of our everyday lives. In last week’s Times, we were fortunate to tell the story of Dr. Bob Lidkea.
“Volunteering is the tax you pay for living in a good community” explained Bob’s efforts for Fort Frances and the district.
We learned last week of the efforts of the community of Emo coming out and supporting the Sturgeon Creek Alternative school program. Again it is citizens making a difference.
Every week we try to tell those stories as do community newspapers around the world. Through their travels, I have been able to learn a great deal of the communities my sons have travelled to and live in by reading the newspapers on the web.
The web now lets me read of the daily happenings in Canadian communities and in far-off countries.

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