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My family's doing Zoomsgiving this year. I just finished sitting in on our practice-run Zoom call. It went pretty well. There were a few times when we bumped into the usual video-meeting annoyances—folks talking over each other and such. But overall this visit was great. My NYC cousin was able to join in no problem; she didn't make it to all of our physical family gatherings. (The east coast, it turns out, is far away.) My Athens, GA cousin was able to join in no problem; he also can't always swing the travel for physical gatherings. A couple of my aunts still live in the Bay Area, but are in more far-flung parts. For a physical gathering, they have long drives. One is old enough such that she doesn't like to drive at night; thanks to video chat, she didn't have to drive at night. The aunt that lives up in the Santa Cruz mountains hasn't made the drive to see us lowlanders much since she had a foot injury that makes it tough to drive; she didn't have to drive. This video call was the biggest gathering we've mustered in several years.

I guess I'm saying: video chat isn't as nice as IRL meeting… but some folks were getting left out of the IRL meetings. It was good to see them again. I'm glad we're doing Zoomsgiving instead physically gathering. Safety's the main reason I'm glad, but there are other benefits.

Tags: travel

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