Last week, during an impromptu (and unnecessary) trip to Trader Joe’s for Mochi ice cream , my roommate and I walked through cold, sleeting rain. When we stepped into the warmth of the well-lit grocery store we saw that water was dripping off our jackets and creating little puddles on the floor if we stood still too long.
“HAHA THIS IS HILARIOUS”, I say, pulling out my phone to take a picture for my snap story . That’s when I noticed that water had seeped into my phone through the spider-like cracks on my screen.
I stared at my phone, bewildered, manically pressing the home button, helplessly tapping the screen. There I was, at the entrance of Trader Joe’s, moms with red shopping carts speeding past me, my hair sticking to the my face, my socks squelching in my boots, praying to God that I wouldn’t have to explain to my parents that I broke another iPhone.
My roommate laughed, grabbed a shopping cart and neatly summed up my situation.
“You’re fucked,” she says. Then, she took a photo of me for her snap story.
Days after losing my phone, I had come to embrace the freedom that came with it. I only read text messages when my laptop was in a Wifi zone, I didn’t have to post on Instagram or Twitter, I didn’t have to capture every time I ate a pretty waffle with ice cream from Cafe Bene to show my friends on Snapchat.
Instead, I found that I had to actually look around me when I was walking home; that I had to find something else to entertain me when I was sitting on the subway; that I had actually take in an incredible moment because I didn’t have my cell phone to capture it.
“So that just showed me Dad, having a cell phone isn’t really a necessary thing. Ironically, I’m more connected to the world without one.”
My dad looked at me and rolled his eyes.
“So basically, you need a new phone.”
My brother laughs and slides a 2006 flip phone across the counter.
“Here you go”, my dad smiles, “enjoy being connected.”