For a short while, I taught English at school in a small village in Estonia.  There wasn’t much to do in the off-hours, so I often took walks through the surrounding countryside, which I enjoyed.  One day I passed a small store on a back road.  I went inside to take a look. There wasn’t much merchandise in the store.  A woman sat silently behind a counter – I had learned that the locals never felt the need to make small talk.  To justify my presence in there, I chose a few small stationery items to purchase and put them on the counter.  Suddenly I heard a soft clicking and whizzing.  To my amazement, the woman was using an abacus to total the bill.  I felt a small thrill watching one being used in a commercial transaction. 

I thought the abacus was a museum-piece, but M. who is Japanese, has told me she has seen them used in Japan.


There are no comments on this post.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: