Day Unplugged

I have every necessity of life in the form of a laptop, tablet, iPod, iPad, cell phone—you name it. I have been called the Tech Queen, even at work where everyone else is glued to some type of electronic device. There is no productivity, commercial or personal, these days without our gear. Bring it on! Just imagine a day with no cell phone or laptop, not even a plug-in radio for company. (We keep one in the storage room in case of emergency—the Internet goes down.) I don’t mind that my survival depends on my equipment. I am talking about my mental survival, that is. I even need the digital calculator to do any math. I use the computer to tell the day and time. I get oriented early in the morning after being roused by a digital LED alarm. Then life goes on.

I had the opportunity to test my mettle, being self-sufficient all on my own, when the office bonding day rolled around. We have one every year and know what to expect. We are told not to bring a single thing, especially our phones. “Leave them in the van.” We had strict orders. We were intended to connect with one another instead of with people miles away by means of texts and emails. And so we did. I had a great time. The food was fabulous and there was plenty of it. We had a huge keg and a cooler full of every beverage known to man. We ate and drank our way through the day. I learned that you can make your own fun with other people as foils. When you talk to them, you want to give your undivided attention and make eye contact. No lingering thoughts about that last email.

The company made sure we had distractions. There were assorted games, the kind you play in the park, and live music for ambience. Most of us loved jumping up and down like fools in the kids bounce house the most, provided for entertainment. I hadn’t been in one since I was five! Remember those kids’ birthday parties and the huge inflated castle in the front yard? I had forgotten how much fun it is to be buoyant and then land in a silly pile of rubber balls. We laughed our heads off. No one missed their devices. But guess what, the minute the event was over and we piled into the van, out came the cell phones one by one and we emitted a sigh of relief in unison. Then when I got home, I jumped on the Internet to launch a post and now I could relax. I was in electronics heaven once again. In my element, I had things to do for the next two or three house. For me, this is the best reality. But I loved the company outing and look forward to the next one.