Pick a Station, Any Station

I know the first thing a magician says to engage an audience when performing a card trick. “Pick a card. Any card.”

I think of the possibilities. I can actually choose one of 52 choices, 53 if there is a joker in the deck. The world is my oyster. But in these C-19 (covid) times, I play a variation of that. And I discovered the game quite accidentally.

A friend of mine was running for office in the NWT elections a few months back. There was, understandably, little about how she was doing in my local media.

I used an app on my I-Phone that provided thousands of radio stations around the world. One of those stations was in the capital of the Northwest Territories, Yellowknife. It is better known as YK-Radio. I had it playing all evening as I puttered about my house. I’d stop and listen attentively when her riding came on for updating.

Later, when pondering the marvels of our age, I thought about the unique opportunity I had during this pandemic. Staying home gave me more time on my hands than I thought available on a clock, and I had time to try out some new-to-me technology.

The app was easy to get up and running on my phone. Now I started to go on my Armchair Adventure. I stayed with stations that were primarily English. London, England, was a good start for me. I roamed all across the United Kingdom. I just love those accents, even when I couldn’t understand it all. Then back to an Air Trip across Canada, stopping at least once in each province.

This took me a couple of weeks. I sought out a few stations in each jurisdiction and settled on one that carried a lot of local news and stories. What fun. Pete Luckett, signed off his own grocery segment on CBC with “Toodle dee do.” He now owns a big scale vineyard in the Annapolis Valley in Nova Scotia. Who knew!

This adventure was so unexpected and so much fun.

Full circle for me. I remember as a young child listening to the radio with all its magical tubes. It generated heat and warmed the wooden cabinet. I turned the selector to ‘short-wave’. I occasionally pulled in Fort Wayne, Indiana, as the signal bounced off the atmosphere. At the time, that sounded like the edge of the known world. What a thrill.

So, with more time on your hands than you ever thought possible, download an app or Google the internet. We are all next door to each other on this planet, earth. Ask for help from someone younger than you and help them to be open to the world. What a gift you have to give.

My thanks to St. Albert Seniors Association: 780-459-0433 for making this Blog possible.

Glenn Walmsley