Edith and Hazel

The other night while washing the dishes I was commenting on a recent visit we had with Terry’s aunt Edith and her friend Hazel. They are a couple of long-time friends and retired women who love nothing better than a good conversation and a great joke.

Up for anything

They’re quite adventurous those two. They drove up to Edmonton from Calgary on the first and worst major snowstorm of the year. Even though we warned them that the road conditions were treacherous, they were up for an adventure.

Conversation tips and advice to build connection

Great conversation

They are both Irish Canadians and it seems like many of the Irish, they were born with the gift of the gab – the Irish call it crack or the craic, meaning good conversation or news. They can make the most mundane situation sound like a wild adventure. Their harrowing drive up became a hilarious story when retold with passion and a little exaggeration (just a little).

Smart phones = dumb conversation?

I was lamenting to Terry that most people of our generation and younger have lost the ability to converse. We’re so connected electronically and yet we’ve become less connected emotionally.  Being a great conversationalist isn’t possible with 140 twitter characters. We can all do with a little face-to-face practice.

Face time

Edith and Hazel didn’t become great conversationalist overnight. It happened over a lifetime of informal gatherings – getting together with friends on weekends and sharing stories and experiences.

Holiday craic

Put away the smart phones for a while and build some connection. Over the holiday season, why not use this time to get into the spirit by inviting people over that you haven’t  seen for a while and practicing the good old fashioned art of conversation. (Click here for a surprising history of the word craic. It even surprised Terry the Irish man and he thinks he knows everything.)

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Posted by Joanne Blake – The Canadian Corporate Image Consultant and enjoyer of good craic

About the author 

Joanne Blake

Canadian speaker, corporate image consultant & business etiquette expert. If you're interested in booking a presentation, keynote or coaching, contact me. Based in Calgary / Edmonton, Alberta in western Canada.

  1. WOW! That sounds like quite the adventure. Thanks for sharing Val.
    Reminds me of a trip to Jasper awhile back where we were asked to leave a hiking trail because the Pope had come for visit and for security reasons they needed to evacuate the entire area. There were helicopters everywhere and we thought there had been a serious accident. At the end of all that it turns out he never showed up and visited Elk Island Park instead.

  2. It must be a British thing as we Scots are the very same!! Its always been part of our culture to share interesting and witty experiences and stories with our friends and family. Having moved to Edmonton 5 years ago, I deliberately seek out all manner of new adventures (I’m sure quite mundane and boring to our Canadian friends) but which made good fodder for the many phone conversations and long emails I sent back home much to the delight of our kin. Our own road trip from hell was the return from Vernon that first summer we arrived – driving with only a sniff of gas in the tank, encountering two major road accidents (holding us up for two hours each as a helicopter landed to deal with the wounded), no washroom for hours (and no bush cover if you catch my drift in front of the miles and miles of lined up traffic), which lead to a scary drive through the national park in darkness and then, just when we thought the coast was clear, the worst thunder, lightning and rain storm we’ve ever seen from Red Deer to Edmonton! We were utterly exhausted by the time we got home! Gotta love adventure and the opportunity for spinning some good crack!

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