We are currently vacationing in beautiful Florida, a vacation that I had hoped would be interrupted only by sunshine and the mammoth sea cows and NOT by my typical (and very enjoyable) world of technological communication. The idea was to abstain from e-mails, facebook, twitter, faxes, radblog, voicemail, hand-written notes, telegrams, smoke signals, fighting cats and telemarketers, all for the sake of total disconnect to life 1, which enables total connection to life 1.1 — I’m still me, of course, but there are variations. For example, I’m not reading e-mails and incessantly checking facebook. I’m not looking at what my friends (and celebrity friends) have tweeted, nor am I tweeting or facebook status writing. It’s been one week. Being intentional about something for 7 days really does do something to a person. A moratorium on communication “back home” has brought at least two differences to the table:
1. My iPhone battery has never lasted so long. Normally I would be using it to perform all of the functions mentioned above and more. Lately it has been a GPS only and maybe a phone call to a close family member. This dramatic underuse has led to the battery lasting for days, when it used to not even make it through one 12 hour period without flat-lining, especially in a 3G environment. I’m surprised that someone from AT&T hasn’t texted me, asking if everything is ok. But then I remember that it’s AT&T we’re talking about, not Sprint, who actually sent my sister flowers just because she aced a grad school exam. No, this didn’t really happen, but it sure feels like it could.
Oh, right… the other difference that not being fully connected brings:
2. My brain has never felt more rested. Someone advised me concerning vacations and cited their own tactic. They said that I should do what they do, which is drive in one direction for a while, get there, get out and just vegetate. Hmm… me, not blinking. Let’s see if THAT gets AT&T’s attention. The closest I can come to just staring at general stuff is to get rid of the one thing I stare at most, which is a computer screen. Oh, there’s plenty to stare at in beautiful Florida. Giant Palmetto bugs. Dolphins and sharks, wrestling underwater fin to fin. People who have thick New York accents and even thicker tanned leather for flesh. You can also stare at humidity. Unlike Arizona, it’s a very very wet and tangible heat, which I like. All this staring at stuff has helped my brain slip into neutral, which would explain why its just rolling around aimlessly. And isn’t that kinda the point of a vacation?
To prove that my brain is truly in neutral, let me illustrate using a practice called “free writing”, where one just writes whatever comes to mind and sticks with it. Here we go:
Wow. That humidity sure is there. Hmm… so. Let’s forget about our troubles and watch those dolphins laugh at that shark. Hey, is that Mr. Nickopopalous over there, walking his dog to someone else’s yard so it can “do it’s business”, a euphemism that assumes that defecation has something to do with banking? Maybe it does. Maybe dogs are leaving gold everywhere they go. Hey. That palmetto bug just took that guy’s wallet. I would do something, but no. He’s got tentacles. So does the bug.