For two years, my family never learned how to use Skype. I had barely used it myself. But my parents finally invested in a web cam and, more importantly, in learning how to use the service. Last night, it really paid off. I was able to sit at my computer more that 6000 miles away (it was a question my mom had last night) and talk with my whole family.
I was on the computer in the dining room and everyone was sitting around the table. They weren't really talking with me. We were talking as a family. There were the usual heated discussions that of course didn't get anywhere. There were side conversations between family members. Half the time I was just sitting and listening. Unfortunately, my internet speeed was so slow (why are holidays at the end of the month after I use up all my allotted bandwith?) that I just saw blurry blobs moving around a screen, but I could identify everyone.
This is the third Thanksgiving I wasn't home for. And I still won't make it back in time for next year's. But it felt a lot more like Thanksgiving this year than all the other years. This year, I am thankful for Skype.