From village to virtual village


I was allowed to talk to the strangers as a child. It was important to greet everyone. Even though I did not know the entrants, however, they knew my parents or grandparents. Often I was asked: Whose daughter are you?

I grew up in a small village in North Karelia, near the Russian border. Children were taught to be a part of the community and the neighborhood. For example we didn’t lock the door. It was so far impossible because there was no lock on the door. If we were not at home, we used to leave the broom against the door as a sign.  If our neighbors wanted to drop by for a coffee, they saw that no one was at home.

Because I was taught as a child to say hello to all, I have continued it as well now as an adult. Or rather, the city residents are not able to say hello to all, otherwise the person would have to say hello continually. People who I greet on a regular basis, whether they are now my villagers? The bus driver, co-workers, a grocery, neighbors, school mates, teachers, the librarian

I live in residential area which is built on former industrial wasteland and it’s called Arabianranta. Here we have a project called Helsinki Virtual Village. Wireless network in our region connects residents, companies and schools. Services, recycling, hobbies and events are at my fingertips. The Virtual Village makes our broad and diverse area a village-like place.

And then we have Facebook. Someone defined a Facebook friend as a person to who I say hello on the street. They are, therefore, the villagers.


15 thoughts on “From village to virtual village

  1. Pingback: We didn’t lock the door | Andrew Munro's Blog

  2. It is so nice to read about a world without locks! I remember that my grandmother always left her front door standing open if she went to the shop so that her friends could come in and make themselves a cup of tea whilst they waited for her. It seems so sad that we have to be so careful these days. Perhaps you are right that FB is the new village.

  3. What a lovely memory of your grandmother! I remember my grandmother busy doing kitchen chores and there was a knock at the door. She stopped what she was doing, replied calmly: “enter”, and at the same time put the coffee pot on the stove.

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