Friday, November 23, 2007
A brief sojourn under the grid
Office rat stats:
Average number of hours per day spent using the computer: 14 hours
Mobile phone usage: 24 hours on standby; 1 hour actual usage (if I'm lucky)
Time spent @ home: 6 hours, or just about enough time needed to sleep
I recently had a brief sojourn under the grid. It was totally unplanned, just one of those things that happen when there is no spare time to properly organize a trip. For someone who is close to obsessive with lists and a great believer of planning, packing barely five hours before leaving for the airport is a significant deviation from the norm.
I was too caught up with work that I managed to cram my preparations for the trip in just a few hours. Consequently, I found myself with no roaming access. It was by choice though, I think, because up to the last minute (between those moments that I can actually think of something else other than work) I was having an internal debate on the "need" to pay the X amount required to have it activated.
As soon as I finished packing, the first thought that popped in my mind was... "Tsk, this would be the first time I am going on a trip with my mobile phone practically useless". Second thought..."I better make sure I access my office email to check the things that I need to work on".
As it turned out, the trip unfolded in ways both unexpected and surprisingly refreshing. It turned out to be an opportunity to revisit life under the grid. I had a week to touch base with my true non-tech-savvy self and realize how much I enjoy life without the attendant gadgets that seem to cause those roller-coaster feelings of frenzy and constant need to hibernate in my forcefield just to get things done. The fun part was, I had the chance to connect with people in ways that those never-ending emails, YM messages, telephone calls, text messages, etc. cannot afford me.
Being under the grid was a very liberating experience. It was like reconnecting with the world. I realized that the basics are still the richest resource of life. Going under the grid is not a bad thing after all. In fact, I promised myself to make it a point to schedule more of what I now call as my under-the-grid-time.