What did you feel when you read that title? Terror? Secret relief? Anxiety? Yes, I feel the same and got to feel all those things recently when I took an unexpected dip into the Ipswich River when my kayak and its contents overturned. Thankfully the water was only hip deep, but it was October in New England and therefore a bit chilly!
As I saw my cell phone floating downstream in its not-completely-waterproof plastic baggie, it honestly was my first and major concern. I called out to my friend to rescue it while I turned my kayak upright and waded my way to shore to drain it and get back in.
Yes, you read that correctly: I was more concerned about my phone than my own safety (which really wasn’t at a major risk, but still)…
As far as my phone goes, I’m probably among the average when it comes to usage and how much I rely on it. I need it for both of my jobs, including scheduling and communication. My 20-something-year-old kids text me on it, as does my mom, and I often email and text my clients. I use the camera to take client photos and capture fun/happy times in my life, or that great recipe or magazine article. I kill it at mahjong when I feel like chilling or procrastinating. I’d be lost (literally) without my maps app. I use my bank’s mobile deposit feature to instantly deposit checks from massage clients, or run their credit card. I track my fitness and eating (and my monthly cycle), and use my local pharmacy/store app to find specials and save money. The list goes on, but I do try and unplug from it when I can.
So to not have access to these things was a little jarring. My phone was still salvageable (woo hoo) from its swim but it definitely had some moisture inside, and I had to do the old rice and dehumidifier trick to dry it out. My touch ID no longer works, but everything else seems to be functional, so I have to say that I am quite fortunate that it wasn’t worse! I used my partner’s phone to text my family to let them know that they could only access me through his phone as we no longer have a landline, and I used my computer to access many of the apps that I needed to use in the interim.
However, the experience certainly made me realize how often I reach for my phone, how instinctive it is to want to look something up on Google (I swear I’m on it at least a dozen times a day for that alone!). And being over the age of 25, I ask myself “what did we do before cell phones?!” besides have to look at paper maps to figure out how to get places, and not have an answer to “what band did that song?”.
I was relieved that it still works, but it did make me wonder what my life would be like without a cell phone. Have you ever felt the same?