LIFE IN THE COUNTRYWe live in a large country town which is 20 minutes from a good sized country "city" and a couple of hours away from Perth - the capital city of Western Australia. We see ourselves as living the dream - all the mod cons without the traffic and stress.
Out our way, we have several internet providers to choose from and I thought the one we chose did a pretty good job.....until recently! The last few months have been a roller coaster ride of great one minute and AB-SOL-UTELY useless the next. I'm beginning to think our internet provider has a curl right in the middle of it's forehead......because when it's good it's very, very good and when it's bad it's HORRID!
HOW DID I BECOME SO INTERNET DEPENDENT?One of the big components of blogging (if you actually want anyone to know you've written something lately) is social media. You have to share you blog posts, you want to reciprocate when others are kind enough to share your stuff. You want to read, and comment, and share, and like, and interact and it's BL**DY near impossible when your internet signal is a snail's breath away from non-existant!
I am on holidays at the moment - a glorious month with nothing planned - lots of internet surfing was on the menu, but instead, I'm in the middle of a month of email that sort of works, Facebook that barely loads, Pinterest that loads sporadically, and don't get me started about the impossibility of downloading anything bigger than a postage stamp (a low resolution postage stamp at that!)
The thing that amazes me is how much this impacts on my life. Did you know that people used to live their entire lives without being attached to their laptop or phone (I know - weird, right?) I am on holidays at the time being and a large chunk of my day seems to be devoted to cruising around the interwebbities reading stuff and looking at pretty pictures. Don't even get me started on Wikipedia and what happens when you start clicking on links, and more links, and more links, and more links......
ADDICTION?I am not totally addicted to my laptop and social media, but I'm thinking that I'm pretty close. Unfortunately there seems to be less and less on television that interests me nowadays - and I'm doing my utmost to not sign up for Netflix because I'd never emerge from the screen ever again! During the week I read prolifically - (well, at least a book or two a week) and I work and have coffee dates and catch an occasional movie with my husband, but I do seem to spend quite a bit of time (more than I realized) on my faithful laptop browsing endlessly.
I pin a ridiculous amount of pretty pictures on my Pinterest Boards - I have no real rhyme or reason for what I pin (all the Pinterest pundits would be rolling their eyes at that confession) - I just have to like it, or find it funny, or pretty, and it's wham, bam, pinned. I also check Facebook regularly and play Words with Friends while I'm there.
When I'm not online, I suddenly feel marooned and I begin to wonder if I might be missing some really important updates - someone might be getting married, or engaged, or having a baby and I won't know! But (funnily enough) nothing much really happens - and it is actually possible to be 24 hours behind the times and still be relevant. When it comes to Facebook I always think of the meme I saw (on Pinterest of course - and re-pinned of course!) and it sums up my Facebook experience to a tee:
WHAT TO DO?
Although it is beyond frustrating having my internet connection see-sawing all over the place, I've come to realise that my blog and my life will still go on regardless. Everything in life has its seasons and times when it's good and when it's not so good. I'm learning to leap in and enjoy my moments of connectivity, and to walk away and find something else to occupy myself when things drop off.
When those little Internet Gremlins finish mucking around and they let me back on for an hour or two, I sigh with contentment, answer my half dozen emails and run around like a cut snake trying to catch up on all my reading and commenting before I get sent back into the Dark Ages again and start learning Morse Code. I guess I could always do some housework, or some exercise.....but there's also that 1,000 piece jigsaw that needs finishing - or I could have a nap. Now that sounds like a plan!
Am I the only person in Internet Hell? Or is the dark wizardry of the Intetnet Gremlins more widespread than I thought?