I love and hate MSFT Virtual Earth.
It is wonderful to get to see where you’re going before you get there, and I had a blast going through my deceased grandparents’ old postcards from their trips they took as a young couple. Getting to see how things have changed (or not, in one case) from when they travelled through Nova Scotia 60 years ago was neat and made me feel connected to them, if only for a little while, which is good because I miss them terribly.
On the other hand, I looked up my childhood home, and the neighborhood is so different that I was heartbroken. Growing up, I lived in an old farmhouse that backed onto a cornfield and a row of trees where we picked black raspberries every summer. Where there was the cornfield that housed my summer forts (carpeted with grass clippngs – quite luxurious!) and trees and raspberry bushes, there are now houses upon houses. The farmhouse had been rotated 90 degrees (it was pretty ratty while I was growing up, so why they didn’t just raze it mystifies me), and the huge old weeping willow — whose bark yieled up handfuls of locust shells to me and my nextdoor playmate, Troy Minnich — was gone. The local pool looked different, and the high school had changed. I was very sad.