What about the Apple Watch?
My dad has always been a watch guy. We all know that guy, he gets really into watches and will find good money for a good quality watch. He only ever had enough for one good watch as they broke. He always liked Citizen watches.
After my dad passed I opened his drawer, which was more like a gravesite for all the watches he’d owned over the years.
I stood there, tears in my eyes, thinking about when he got this one, where he got that and how I ran around testing out a stopwatch complication, which was magical to the five year old me.
It is such a strange phenomenon to pick up a watch and instantly remember when that on his wrist. As if the watches were some sort of chapter in a book.
I stood there with the watch he was wearing when I played my first game of soccer, a round faced and battered Citizen. The watch he was wearing when we went on that family holiday, a silver link Citizen. The watch he wore to my high school graduation, that bulky Tissot. The watch he was wearing when he passed away, a 42mm Gold Apple Watch Sport.
I stood holding that watch, being confused. The same type of memories flooded back, but it was different. Lots of other regular people find some connection between a mechanical watch and a person. Dad has his fathers last watch for instance, and he held that so dear to him.
What happens when the last watch you have is a tiny computer?
It is just a different feeling to what you would expect from a mechanical watch. It felt cold, like it was a piece of tech, not a piece of my dad, like his other watches were. A data processing device that took his heartbeats and tracked them. Took his messages and made sure he was at the right place at the right time. I stared at the black screen for so long trying to feel something. I couldn’t.
But today I could. This watch were more dad than any other watch he had owned. He sent me heartbeats and sketches in days leading up to his death, this was something we did rarely, but it’s all I’ve got now. That is power of the Apple Watch that I would have never realised until now. When Apple get up on stage and say, “This is the most personal device we have ever created” they don’t just say that, you actually feel it. I ended up giving his last mechanical watch to his brother, and I will keep his 42mm Gold Apple Watch. Just like he kept his fathers watch. So thank you Apple. It will always remind me of that last flashing red heart.
And right now, I would give anything to feel his heart beat once more.
For Bernardus Johannes Penning.
Andrew Penning. 21/3/16