Illustration: Luo Xuan/GT
Why does everything seem so much more simple and dreamy in the days gone by? Maybe it was lack of technology that forced us to be more personal or maybe the slower pace of life that left you with time to "stop and smell the roses?"
I always hear my elders talking about how simpler times were when there weren't phones in everyone's hands and the only entertainment they had was sitting around listening to radio talk shows. However, were these times as great as we think they were? Do they owe their enchantment to their distance in time?
I recently watched a movie entitled Midnight in Paris (2011). In this fantasy film, the main character gets lost in the streets of Paris and at the stroke of midnight, a vintage vehicle pulls up, the passengers encourage him to get in and he is transported to the 1920s, the era he has always romanticized.
During his journey to the past, he realizes the people living in his "golden age," long for the ages before theirs.
Using "The Roaring 20s" as an example, in an age of sustained economic prosperity and cultural edginess, things were not as pretty as the pictures of flappers and cocktail parties we all have painted in our minds.
As the populations in cities grew, crime and political corruption became more acceptable and even reached into the nation's congress, and organizations such as the Klu Klux Klan began to form.
Same goes for our parents and grandparents, who believe they lived in a better, simpler time. Forgetting all the hardships they faced and how, maybe, they are only remembering what and how they want to feel about the past.
Today things are growing and changing faster than ever. We have a world of knowledge literally at our fingertips; we have the ability to travel, move to new places and achieve things people in the past, and even our own parents, could never dream of.
Although I find myself thinking of what it must have been like to live "the simple life," I still think today is better than all the yesterdays.
Next time you hear someone saying they wished they didn't live in these times, ask them about their travels or how they are able to talk with friends who live far away or in other countries.
While the past is something we should all treasure and learn from, I consider the present my golden age.
This article was published on the Global Times Metropolitan section Two Cents page, a space for reader submissions, including opinion, humor and satire. The ideas expressed are those of the author alone, and do not represent the position of the Global Times.