Mom still enjoys reading mystery novels, but the Kindle we gave her six Christmas’ ago stopped holding a charge, so we gave her a Kindle Fire.  She seemed to like the larger screen and bright colors and back-light much better and after spending some time showing her how it worked she dove into a new book.  Twenty minutes later, as Bill and I sat in the Arizona room watching the evening news, we suddenly heard her chatting with someone.  Although she’s had conversations with invisible people in the past, this was the first time we’d heard anyone answer back.

Hello.  My name is Todd.  How are you today?

“Oh, the same,” she responded.  “Who did you say you were?”

Todd with Mayday.  What can I do for you?

“Oh, I don’t know.  Maybe get my book back?  It was getting good.”

Your book?”

“Yes, the one I’m reading.  It’s a mystery about a woman and her sister and some other people.  If you could get it back for me then I could tell you more about it,” she said.

“What the…,” Bill exclaimed, as I stood up and hurried into the living room.

Well, I’m not sure if I can help with that?” came the disembodied voice.  “Is there anything else I can do?”

“I’ll just get my daughter to help me.  You can hang up now,” she instructed, turning the tablet flat and shaking it like an Etch a Sketch in an attempt to make the voice disappear.

I took the Kindle from her and looked at the screen.  There, in the lower right corner, was a live feed of a pleasant looking young man.  “Hello.  My name is Todd.  How can I help you?” he said, smiling out at me from somewhere in the ether.

“Hello Todd,” I replied, giving him a weak wave.  “I’m afraid my mom accidently got to you somehow, so I’m just going to close whatever this is and turn off the WiFi.  Sorry for the inconvenience.”

She accessed Mayday.  Are you sure there isn’t anything I can do for you?

“Nope, nothing legal any way, I replied with a sigh.  “We’re good here.  Have a nice evening.”

After disabling her ability to inadvertently wander into the mysterious world of the internet, I re-opened the book she was reading, found the last page she’d been on, and handed her the Fire.

“Mom, if you need help maneuvering around on this thing, please just call me and I’ll come and help,” I said as I turned to go back to the Arizona room.

“Okay, but if I can’t find you I’m calling Todd back,” she shouted after me before burying her nose back into her latest book.



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