“Excuse me, do you know the Wifi password?”
Albeit shamefully, this was a sentence that frequented my vocabulary miles away into the middle of the South Pacific during a craved escape from office life and real world debacles.
It spewed from my SPFd lips as I draped my towel over my pool chair, and it passed through salt mouthed banter over grapefruit margaritas at happy hour at the beach bar. Like any desperate addict, I went for my fix often and felt at ease when I felt it within reach. I’d feel the familiarness of its smooth glass between my thumb and forefinger and just give it a glance during lulls in conversation – a quick tap at the home button had me just “checking” to see how many bars I had. It was only a couple Snapchats I wanted to make sure went through, and of course the awaited text from the boyfriend. “If it’s 4 hours ahead here, he’s probably done work in about half an hour.” I mean, I was on vacation after all. I was “unplugged”. “I wonder if it’s nice there…better check Saskatoon weather.”
And before you judge me too hard, I was most certainly not on my phone the whole time in Hawaii. Not when wifi wasn’t available I wasn’t. Those times were alright. I mean, I wasn’t supposed to be doing anything else. If I was missing out on something back home, so be it – I couldn’t even know about it anyways. If I missed a text, oh well – island life. But if we stepped off the streets or beach and into an establishment, I was quick to pull the trigger–or at least my phone out of my beach bag.
I brought my DSLR camera with my new 40mm prime Canon pancake lens. I’d probably leave my phone in the hotel room most of the time, I reasoned. The plan was to connect socially about once a day, and then use it for photos the rest of the time. Rules – I’m good at them.
But hell, it takes up zero room so I mean, I might as well tuck it in my purse. That way, I could say goodnight or answer any important texts. Or maybe even post an Instagram, but only if it was really worth it, though. Like those candy-coloured sunsets if we walk down the beach. Better pack it just in case.
And as the sun rose and set over the little volcanic island in the middle of the sea, closer to sharks and sea turtles than anyone I knew and hours away from mainland, I felt as connected to real life as ever. What even was unplugged, and with the ease of modern day technology, how do you even get there?
That was my question to myself. Does anyone else feel like this on vacation? Why was it so tough for me to even go one day–or one night–without my fibreglass sidekick? Don’t get me wrong, I had a awesome vacation and the beauty of the Hawaiian Islands completely renewed me, but during my next vacation, I’ll be completely unplugged, I swear I will be.
Or at least most of the time…