I'm in Germany right now, staying in a small village castle. It's old and picturesque. Thick walls, kind of in the middle of nowhere. So it's not surprising that there might be times when the internet goes out.
That happened yesterday. All day. It was the strangest sensation, not being able to make contact with whoever I wanted in the world, any time I wanted. To search and find information I needed in minutes. I felt like I'd been thrust back in time to the early nineties.
Can you image going through life without the internet? Without a smartphone? How did those '80s and '90s peeps survive?
I'm old enough to remember the simpler life well. Don't be fooled: technology may have made doing things simpler, but it hasn't simplified our lives. No, now we work longer and harder because we can. We sleep less because we go to bed with our laptops and tablets and smartphones. Back in those days, we went to bed with a book, paper that needed a light to read. It's a scientific fact that the white light from a screen confuses our brain to the time of day. It's harder to fall asleep.
A day without internet, a reminder of times past.
Don't get me wrong. I'm happy to have the technology we have. I love how I can keep connected to my family when I'm half a world away with a simple tap of the facetime icon on my phone. I wouldn't be making my living as an Indie author if I didn't have the technology we now have, and I love my work.
But I'm glad that I've lived through an age without it. I think it's provides a kind of balance. My kids barely remember life with VHS and 5″ floppy disks. They were in middle grade and high school before owning a smart phone was the norm for everyone, including kids.
I wonder about children today, who know of nothing else. Always connected, always on, sleeping less and stressing more.
I hope they still get a chance to play board games and run around outside with friends. I hope they can take a rest from their peers and connect with their parents, face to face. I hope they will learn to value quiet times and going slow and experience nature.
This is what I hope.
Photo credit: donnierayjones via Visualhunt.com / CC BY