We had many family traditions when I was growing up. One of the those was "Slide Night". This was the night when Dad would take out his slide projector, the slide carousels that housed a hundred or more slides and set up the projection screen.
The eight children and Mum would assemble in the lounge room and would then be taken through a viewing of what seemed like an eternity of photo slides, accompanied by full narration (being an accountant by trade, Dad loves the details) from family events like the 1965 Disneyland trip, the drive through Canada in 1969 and family visits to our native Spain in 1970.
Being one of the youngest in the tribe, I was attentive during the Disneyland trip slides with fabulous stories of the Pirates of the Caribbean and It's a Small World After All experiences. The whole presentation process got tiring by slide 125 as we started on the Canadian leg and I was fast asleep by the Spanish trip.
A few months ago, my Dad who's now approaching 80 years of age, asked me whether I wanted to see his latest photos from a family event. My mind immediately went back to Slide Nights and a fear enveloped me of having to go through the set-up process again, let alone having to sit through multiple monotonous images. Dad then said, "Wait here, we'll watch it on the Plasma TV".
STOP THE PRESS - this I had to see.
Dad walked into the TV room, plugged his digital camera into the plasma and off we went - that's him on the right in this photo - as I had to capture the moment. We skipped through the boring shots and went into detail on the most relevant ones. It was a dream viewing compared to Slide Night circa 1970.
Slide projectors and slides have long been replaced by digital alternatives over the years. For me, the moment was significant because it wasn't about the technology. This was about HOW the technology was applied by someone who embraced the technology - despite his age - to deliver the best result for what he wanted to achieve.
That moment for me was ... the day the Slide Night died forever.