We’ve been in Vancouver for a week now. A very busy week seeing lots of friends and family. It’s less like a vacation than I expected (replete with husband still working a bit while technically taking vacation days). Less vacation but still great to be in my hometown, see loved ones and even get some Crossfit workouts in at my old gym (so sore!!).
I’ve discussed here that we ditched our iPhones and even claimed that I was going to see if I could go without a cell phone on the Isle of Man. I didn’t. In the end I got a cheap pay as you go phone. I mostly use it to schedule play dates.
This week I am trying something new. No cell phone at all.
While I should be rhapsodizing about how free I feel, that a cell phone ties you down and steals your attention, I am going to say the exact opposite.
Not having a cell phone is a real pain.
Not because they are necessary but because everyone else here has them. City life is busier than island life. People stack their days more. It’s harder to get together and coordinate meeting up. Things just move faster.
Sure, some of this is because we decided to fly over two days before our flight left. There wasn’t much time to set up dinners and get togethers ahead of time. Our friends and family already had full social calendars and their usual activities when we decided to cross the pond. They’ve all been fantastic in rearranging schedules and seeing us as much as possible. But with a lot of family, and Chris and I often in different spots, it’s been hard to nail down the details. I wander the city taking Henry to our old haunts with no way to get in touch or be in touch with people. It hasn’t been liberating. It’s been frustrating.
That said, I actually believe even more that I could go without a cell phone on the Isle of Man without too much impact to our social life. Things are slower. The expat dinner club arranges things by email. Most of the mom’s I know are fairly quick returning an email messages. We wouldn’t be social outcasts because we decided to ditch cell phones entirely.
I know some of you don’t have cell phones. Can you tell me why? Do you feel it impacts your social life or makes things unduly difficult?
Another thing I am interested in, but not even close to doing myself, is cutting Internet service at home. Joshua and Ryan over at The Minimalists talk about it here. I see the merits, I get it, I think it’s awesome, but I couldn’t do it myself right now for so many reasons (work, Skype with family, sourcing recipes and Crossfit workouts to name a few). Sure, I could do all of that in a coffee shop but I’m rarely at coffee shops these days. I use Internet service in the wee morning before my son is up, during his nap time and when/if Henry gets himself very involved in a task. Could you give up home Internet service?