Lately, I have been feeling intruded upon when I'm out and my phone rings, I have been resenting my laptops insistent little blinking lights imperoiously wondering why I am ignoring it AGAIN when GG and I are snuggled on the couch reading.
Don't get me wrong, I still love my cute little laptop, and the mobile phone does come in very handy when I lock myself out of the house for the upteenth time or can't find my husband in Bunnings. And I do still seriously love blogging, even though I have been suffering with writers block for a bit now, both here and in the book.
But doesn't it all seem a bit much lately? We've got technology everywhere we go, in every facet of our lives. In the 60's the marketing hype was that the technological age was going to make life easier, and give us more leisure time, but it feels like it done the opposite. Now we are running around like over-caffinated ferrets, trying to keep up with our jobs, family and friends and all their associated voicemail, email, Facebook, MySpace, Twitter updates and the like. And part of this is great, I have friends, very good friends, far away who I have not seen for ages, or even spoken to on the phone in months, but still can stay in touch with, share photos of our children smeared in Easter chocolate and the like. The opposite is that I haven't hugged my best friend in yonks, but know that Jane Doe is having soup for dinner. Hold the presses.
Yesterday, Easter Sunday, my family and I all went down to a local park to spend the day together. Kids swung on swings, narrowly avoided permanent injury on the monkey bars and ran around screaming til the sugar wore off. Dogs ran, wrestled and swam til they dropped. Adults barbequed and chatted, even charming the people at the next gazebo over into using their camp oven to boil a kettle for us so we could have a cup of tea. Gold. We sat around talking, we sat around playing board games, we sat around swapping family stories we've all heard a million times before, but still crack up at when they are told. It was just a simple, relaxing, fun day. I didn't pick up my phone all day, I didn't even glance at my laptop. It was awesome.
So while technology is probably a very good thing all up, I have been craving a bit of space from it, a chance to enjoy the simple things in life, and connect with people face-to-face, rather than electronically, or in fact not at all if I feel like it. I have always been one of those people that need time alone to decompress, I am comfortable in my own company, and often simply 'forget' to take my phone with me places, just so I can toddle about on my own, with no interruptions.
As a kid I would often take off on my horse for the day, usually with a friend or two, but often alone, and just... ride around. Follow the trail, see where it went, swim in a creek, dry off laying around in the sun, saddle up again and wander on home just in time for tea. This was waaaay before mobile phones, if I ever got into trouble, I was on my own to figure it out for myself. But it was sheer bliss.
I have been reminicing about those days a lot lately, and no doubt they are fairly rose-tinted and romantacised, but they represent such a lovely thing don't they? Solitude, getting back to nature, living simply and working out how to get yourself home.