Finding that unique selling point to make the youth of today forget to swipe.
Our young niece and nephew have come to visit for a few days. Oh, yes, their parents too. They've only been here once, four years ago and now that they are a grown up eight and twelve, it wasn't a guaranteed thing that they would like our rural lifestyle.
Of course, we are connected in the modern sense of the word and not the old fashioned Italian one. We have Internet with the much sought after fiber optic cable and only now did the penny drop for me when I realized that the reason the kids were so happy in their bedroom, was that they were streaming a movie. I didn't even know we had the ability!
The day they arrived, I started my selling strategy and threw out little teasers.
" Kids, at 6 o'clock I have a surprise for you. " " No, I won't tell you what it is. I told you it's a surprise, but you're going to love it! "After a few hours, they were more than ready to go with Bob and I to see this exciting surprise. It was within walking distance ( as it turned out, walking distance for me and the rather unfit contingent kept on asking how much further they would have to walk ) and luckily we reached it before they boycotted the walk, which believe me, was not too far fetched!
I had pre-arranged with a local farmer to take the kids to see his prolific collection of chickens and rabbits and we had timed it so they could see the feeding of both. Something normal for us villagers but hopefully rather special for young city slickers.
Suddenly, at the gate, Bob and I started to panic in case they merely gave this adventure a yawn and a " can we go home now ". At first, there was a moment it could have happened, but suddenly the farmer pointed out baby chicks scattering about. Oh yes, the oohs & aah, how cute were tumbling out of them again and again. Of course I hadn't reckoned the savviness of our kind farmer. He is a veteran on grandchildren and knew how to wow a young audience.
We went to the rabbit enclosure and he quickly picked up a baby rabbit ( oh so cute ) and plopped it into the first child's hands.
" Just hold it properly and make sure you don't drop it! "
and before the other one's lip dropped to far in envy, he drew another two baby rabbits out of his cage. Bob was more than happy to hold a rabbit as well, and I'm not sure who was more excited, Bob or the kids...
Just for good measure, the farmer took us to see a batch of newly hatched chicks. So new, that the egg shells were still about and the young chickling wasn't even able to walk yet. Oh, that was just the best for our young city slickers.
We tracked back home on the long walk ( 500 meters ) and Bob and I only found out the true measure of how successful this venture was, when we got home.
They couldn't wait to tell their parents about holding a rabbit and a little chicklet. Mission accomplished. We gave them a taste of the simply divine rural lifestyle, and for an hour or so, they forget the technological side to their daily life.